While the NBRPA’s headquarters may be based in Chicago, it’s clear that Las Vegas is slowly becoming our home away from home. Whether it’s for NBA Summer League, WNBA All-Star, the Legends Summer Getaway and Golf Experience, or now for college hoops, Las Vegas loves Legends and we love Sin City right back.

To tip off our 2023 Legends college basketball series, which later included stops in Seattle and Cleveland to round out the year, the NBRPA hosted the Legends of Basketball Las Vegas Invitational at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday, December 2. The doubleheader featured an electric showdown between Colorado State and Washington on CBS Sports Network followed by the primetime matchup between top-ranked Gonzaga and USC on ESPN.

The arena opened its doors 90 minutes prior to the first game for eager ticketholders who had upgraded their game day experience to include VIP hospitality in the SKYY Vodka Lounge. Fans of all four participating teams stopped by to enjoy premium food and beverages, mingle with some of their favorite basketball Legends, and snap iconic photos with the NCAA Championship trophy.

As game one got set to tip off, NBA Legends Detlef Schrempf and Sam Perkins found their seats courtside to enjoy the game action. Across the court from Schrempf, a fellow Huskies alum and local Legend was getting ready to cheer on Washington as well –– Kelsey Plum of the Las Vegas Aces.

Gonzaga alum Dan Dickau prepared to call the game and found his seat at the score table as fans and Legends alike continued to flood into the arena, and at 4pm PST game one was under way.

Colorado State and Washington traded baskets like punches in a hard-fought bout throughout the entire matchup, keeping fans on their feet and the energy levels high. In the end, the unbeaten Rams found the edge over the Huskies, and Colorado State prevailed with a score of 86-81.

As game one concluded, a sea of blue, red and gold flooded MGM Grand Garden Arena as Gonzaga and USC fans prepared to watch their teams go into battle. Many in attendance clamored courtside with phones in hand as Bronny James took the court with the Trojans for pre-game warmups, eager to see the prodigal son of LeBron James near his return to game action.

Game two tipped off in front of a lively crowd ready to see another great matchup, including USC alum Nick Young and ESPN’s Jay Williams on the call. Gonzaga took the early lead held onto it throughout the game, with six Bulldogs finishing in double figures and the Zags notching their fourth straight win with a score of 89-76. At the conclusion of the exciting doubleheader, many fans –– whether disappointed or celebrating –– made their way to Flanker Kitchen + Sports Bar for the official after party.

The Legends of Basketball Las Vegas Invitational drew 8,116 attendees to MGM Grand Garden Arena, the highest attendance across all Las Vegas college basketball events and a testament to the impact that the NBRPA is having in the college basketball space –– especially in Las Vegas.

While the NCAA season will soon come to an end, more college hoops action is just around the corner in 2024.

And if that doesn’t come around soon enough for you, you know where to find us in the meantime.

Did someone day “Legends Summer Getaway and Golf Experience 2024”? Until next time, Vegas!