Scottsdale City Council makes way for summer basketball tournaments

WestWorld of Scottsdale is at 16601 N. Pima Road. (Independent Newsmedia/Josh Martinez)

Jam On It Basketball Academy will host its Desert Jam and Southwest Regional Championship tournaments in Scottsdale after the city council approved a contract between the two.

The governing body approved the contract as part of the consent agenda at its Tuesday, March 20 city council meeting at City Hall, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd.

The contract will allow the academy’s tournaments to play at WestWorld of Scottsdale, 16601 N. Pima Road, over the summer.

The city is charging standard rates for the academy to use WestWorld. The event has produced $44,739 in revenue since conception, according to a city staff report.

The Desert Jam tournament will run from June 23-24 and the Southwest Regional Championships are from June 29 to July 1. This is the third year the academy has hosted the events at WestWorld.

The first year, it drew 150 teams with 40 being from out of state, making for an estimated attendance of 4,500, according to a city staff report. In 2017, 170 teams competed with 55 being from out of state, culminating in a 5,100 estimated attendance.

Jam On It Academy is based out of Reno, Nev. and hosts tournaments in Sacramento, Anaheim, Calif., Reno, Nev., Salt Lake City, Scottsdale and Hawaii. Many of the events are Amateur Athletic Union-sanctioned events, according to Jam On It’s website.

The Desert Jam event will feature 10 courts and will be for both boys and girls teams from fourth grade to varsity level and each team will get a three-game guarantee.

The Southwest Regional Championship is partnering with Arizona AAU and will feature teams from Arizona, Texas, New Mexico, Nevada and California. There will be 10 courts and a four-game guarantee.

Several big-name basketball players have gone through Jam On It Academy including Miami Heat forward Luke Babbitt and University of Connecticut guard Gabby Williams, among other collegiate and professional players.

The goal of the academy is “to build a child’s positive self worth and promote a sense of accomplishment by engaging children in fun, competitive play and to foster the belief that trying one’s best is as important in life as it is in sports,” according to the academy’s website.

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