ACC basketball tournament to hold final on Saturday - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

ACC basketball tournament to hold final on Saturday

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The Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament will move to a Tuesday through Saturday format beginning with the 62nd annual event in 2015, the ACC announced on Tuesday.

The new tournament schedule, mutually agreed upon by the ACC and ESPN, will feature Friday semifinal games at 7 and 9 p.m. ET, followed by the championship game on Saturday evening at 8:30 p.m. All 14 tournament games will continue to be televised nationally by ESPN and the ACC Network.

The ACC Tournament will be in Greensboro in 2015.

The ACC championship game had often felt overlooked because it came on the same day as the announcement of the NCAA Tournament. However, for fans, the tournament shift could make it more difficult in some ways for fans who are traveling to the tournament from far away.

Next season will mark the first time since 1981 that the ACC Tournament has featured a Saturday night final. However, the first 28 ACC Tournaments featured Saturday championship games, 27 of which were played in the evening. The 1982 tournament, won by North Carolina, marked the first in which the conference began holding its semifinal games on Saturday afternoon, followed by the Sunday afternoon championship game.

“This is kind of a ‘Back to the Future’ moment for our conference,” ACC Commissioner John Swofford said in a statement. “The Sunday championship game worked tremendously well for more than three decades, but I believe our schools, teams and our fans will be excited about crowning a champion on Saturday night. This will be a win-win for everyone involved – players, coaches, fans - and we greatly appreciate our television partners, ESPN and the ACC Network, working with us to make this happen.”

With the tournament now starting on Tuesday with the first-round games, the ACC regular season will conclude on Saturday of the previous weekend, the ACC said.

Three first-round games on Tuesday, followed by four second-round games on Wednesday and four quarterfinal games on Thursday will precede the Friday semifinals and Saturday championship game.

The ACC Tournament will be played at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., in 2016, followed by a two-year run at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., in 2017 and 2018.

Charlotte will host the 2019 ACC Tournament and the tournament will return to Greensboro in 2020.

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