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Andrew Savory

CEBL announces teams for 2019 inaugural season
CEBL Standings
 1. Edmonton S. 0-0 
 2. Fraser Valley B. 0-0 
 3. Guelph N. 0-0 
 4. Hamilton HB 0-0 
 5. Niagara RL 0-0 
 6. Saskatchewan R. 0-0 


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Chantal Vallee, one of the all-time winningest coaches in Canadian
basketball, has been named the first-ever Head Coach and General Manager of the
Hamilton Honey Badgers of the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL). Vallee
becomes the first woman in basketball history to be named as both Head Coach
and General Manager of a men's professional team, and only the second woman
ever to serve as Head Coach of a men's professional basketball team. The CEBL
begins play in 2019 in six cities across Canada. Hamilton's first-ever game is
scheduled for Sunday, May 12 when Edmonton visits the Honey Badgers at
FirstOntario Centre.

Now in her 14th year as head coach of the University of Windsor women's
basketball program, Vallee has a career winning percentage of .791 (351-93). She
guided the Lancers to a record five consecutive National Championship titles from
2011-2015, and her teams made 11 straight trips to the OUA Final Four, earning
medals nine consecutive times. Her achievements have been honoured with 22
basketball and all-sports Coach of the Year awards from numerous sports bodies,
including twice being named Canadian U Sports Coach of the Year. In 2016, Vallee
was named CAAWS Most Influential Woman in Canada, in the Coach category.
'I am honoured and excited to be taking on the challenge of serving as Head
Coach and General Manager of the Hamilton Honey Badgers in the first year of
Canada's new professional basketball league,' said Vallee. 'We are at an
unprecedented time of growth for basketball across Canada. The Canadian Elite
Basketball League is the first national league with a vision, financial resources, and
executive expertise in running major professional sports organizations to be able
to truly play an instrumental role in furthering the development of basketball in this
country. I would like to thank the University of Windsor for supporting me in taking
on this opportunity with the Honey Badgers as we push to even greater heights
with the Windsor Lancers women's basketball program. I would also like to thank
Honey Badgers President John Lashway for entrusting me to lead the
organization's basketball operations as Head Coach and General Manager.'

Hamilton joins Edmonton, Niagara, Saskatchewan, Guelph, and Fraser Valley
as the original six teams in the CEBL. Each team will include a minimum of 70
percent Canadian players, many playing professionally during the traditional
basketball season. Teams will play a 20-game regular season schedule from May
through August 2019. Season tickets for the Honey Badgers are available now at and Vallee has been an assistant
coach with the Canadian Development and Junior National women's teams, as well
as an assistant coach at the University of British Columbia and McGill University,
where she earned a Master's of Physical Education degree in Coaching and Sport
Psychology. Her post-secondary head coaching career began with a three-year
stint at Montreal's Vanier College where she transformed that program into a topfive
national power. She had previously served as head coach of a men's AAA level
high school program in Quebec that finished fourth in the province.

In 2005, Vallee took the helm of a Windsor program that had only four
winning seasons in 45 years. In her third season, the Lancers posted a 22-9 record,
and in 2008-09 the Lancers rolled to a 33-4 record and into the national
championship tournament to begin a seven-year run of advancing to the
tournament. In 2010-11, Vallee led the Lancers to their first-ever National
Championship title following a 20-2 regular season. They went on to win the
national championship in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. The 2012-13 team registered
a perfect 21-0 record, the first time in OUA women's basketball history that a team
went undefeated since the league went to its expanded schedule.
'Canada is one of the world's leading producers of elite basketball talent,
and that speaks to the quality of coaches we have in this country,' said Lashway,
who spent 22 years in the NBA and 10 in the NHL in senior management positions with
the Toronto Raptors, Portland Trail Blazers, and Toronto Maple Leafs. 'Vallee is
widely regarded as one of the very best, with a remarkable record for winning that
few have come close to matching. Her success is built on core principles and
values that the Honey Badgers will rely on to build a basketball program and a front
office that will engage with the Hamilton community in ways that will bring pride to
our fans, to our corporate and community partners, and to the entire CEBL'.

'I would like to thank the University of Windsor for helping facilitate this
opportunity for Chantal, one that I believe will greatly serve the Honey Badgers
players and staff, the CEBL, the university and its athletic program, and both
female and male coaches who will see that merit and accomplishment can
overcome barriers and create opportunities previously believed unattainable.'
While Vallee becomes the first woman anywhere in the world to be both
General Manager and Head Coach of a men's professional basketball team, she
also becomes only the second woman to be named head Coach of a men's
professional basketball team. Nancy Lieberman, a member of the Basketball Hall of
Fame, coached Texas in the NBA Development League in 2010-11.

Vallee's work apart from basketball has resulted in her being presented with
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee medal in 2013. In 2012 she
received the ATHENA International Leadership Award, which is presented to a
woman, or man, who is honoured for attaining professional excellence, community
service, and for actively assisting women in their achievement of professional
excellence and leadership skills. A noted researcher, speaker, and writer in the
discipline of Transformational Leadership, Vallee has delivered hundreds of
keynote speeches, and has been retained by more than three dozen companies in
a range of industries to advise in the areas of business transformation, leadership
coaching, team performance, and people development.

She is currently on sabbatical from the University of Windsor, co-authoring a
book with world-renowned coaching success and sport psychology researcher Dr.
Gordon Bloom. This will see her spending intensive time this winter with successful
coaches and teams in various sports in Australia, Israel, and in New Zealand with
the famed All Blacks, winner of the last two Rugby World Cups.

Vallee has done basketball commentary on TSN, Sportsnet, CBC, and CTV,
including coverage of the Toronto Raptors, and the 2012 and 2016 Summer
Olympics. She is the featured coach on two instructional DVD's by Championship
Productions, entitled 'Defining the Characteristics of a Winning Coach' and
'Multiple Strategies for Neutralizing Ball Screens.'

Additional information about Vallee may be obtained at   

HAMILTON, Ont. - Canada Basketball and the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL) announced Thursday a collaboration that establishes the CEBL as the 'Official First Division Professional League Partner of Canada Basketball.' The partnership formally makes the CEBL a Division 1 League of Canada Basketball, adhering to official FIBA rules and regulations for the play and officiating of its games. Mutual benefits come in shared resources focused on the development of players, coaches, gam...   [read more]
The Canadian Elite Basketball League announced Tuesday that international sports and lifestyle brand New Era Cap Co Inc. will be the Official On-Court Partner providing all on-court apparel and product for its six member clubs. The partnership is a five-year agreement running through the 2023 season. The professional basketball league opens its inaugural season in May 2019 in Edmonton, Hamilton, Guelph, Saskatchewan (Saskatoon), Niagara (St. Catharines), and Fraser Valley (Abbotsford). M...   [read more]
Guelph Nighthawks Introduce Tarry Upshaw as 1st Head Coach in Team History - 2 months ago
The Guelph Nighthawks Professional Basketball Club is excited to announce Tarry Upshaw as its Head Coach and General Manager for the 2019 Canadian Elite Basketball League season. Coach Upshaw joins the Guelph Nighthawks following a decorated professional career that has taken him from North America to Europe, Asia and the Caribbean. Having both played and coached at the University of Guelph, Tarry brings with him the unique combination of ties to the local basketball community and a str...   [read more]

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