Now that the Augusta Civic Center has repaired their 94′ x 50′ college size court, all 4 of the tournament sites, Cross Center in Bangor, Cross Arena in Portland and the Portland Expo are now the same playing surface length.
Until last year only the 2 arenas in Portland were college sized. The Bangor Auditorium was always 84′ by 50′ for tourney games as was the Augusta Civic Center.
The Expo in Portland is the only non-portable floor.
How will the larger 94′ by 50″ floors effect the games since most of the teams in the tourney have been playing on 84′ by 50′ size courts?
Will it effect their full court pressing game with 10 additional feet to cover?
Will it effect teams that like the high octane fast break style?
Will players judge the distances between each other resulting in some misjudged passes?
Will fatigue enter into the picture and force coaches to go deeper into their benches?
Which teams have the deepest benches?
Will the wide open spaces behind the baskets produce lower perimeter shooting percentages, especially 3 point shooting percentages?
Will teams reduce the number of 3’s they usually attempt during the regular season?
Will shooting percentages from the floor and the foul line be lower then the the regular season?
Will fatigue lead to more turnovers and poor basketball making decisions?
Will the scores of the games be lower?
Do teams that play their home games on college sized floors have an advantage playing and practicing on these college sized floors?
Will bigger, slower, teams physically be at a disadvantage and will the smaller, quicker, teams have an advantage?
Will some teams slow down the tempo of the games and which ones will up tempo their opponents?
Will teams foul more because of fatigue?
Which teams will have taken special care to get ready physically and mentally for the bigger courts?
Which teams will change their normal game strategies?
Which teams will adjust better to the bigger courts?
Did any coaches get their teams onto college sized floors before the tournaments start and /or between semi-final and final games?
These are all questions that will be factors in the success or failure of teams because of playing on college sized courts after playing on high school courts all season long.
The teams that adjust the best and do not let it effect them pyschologically will have a definite floor advantage in their games.
Remembering as a player when we played on college sized courts as high school players it did effect us in some of the ways mentioned above, but once we got to college it was much easier to play on college sized courts. I can remember playing once on a court in New Brunswick that was 106′ by 50′ and one year they held the college conference tournament there and we had to play 2 games in one day and I remember how exhausted I was that night.
Playing on a 94′ by 50′ basketball court after playing on 84′ by 50′ courts all season is like moving the bases in baseball to 95 feet after playing on 90 foot bases all season.
It is certainly different and can be a major factor in some of the outcomes of certain games and the teams that adjust physically and mentally to this change are the teams that are more likely to be more successful.