The first Hardwood Classic Christmas Tournament could be special.
The game takes over the date and site at Bojangles' Coliseum where the old Bojangles' Shootout had been held in recent years.
The Charlotte Sports Commission, which is putting on the tournament, is also trying to breathe new life into the event by putting together the strongest field in three years, at least on the boys side.
The boys tournament should be fun to watch with Sweet 16 No. 2 Northside Christian and No. 6 Mooresville in the field along with private school power Davidson Day and new area power Kennedy Charter Public School.
In fact, all four of those teams could meet in the semifinals, including a Northside-Kennedy Charter meeting that could stand as the biggest Mecklenburg County game of the year so far.
Both teams are unbeaten, stocked with a plethora of college recruits and two of the area's top coaches in Northside Christian's Byron Dinkins and Kennedy Charter's Ed Addie.
One small change I hope organizers will consider for this or future events. In recent years, having back-to-back girls games in the 3:30 p.m. and 5:10 p.m. time slots has caused the event to lose momentum. I'd move the two girls games back one timeslot each day to avoid this.
Other than that, I think the Mecklenburg County Christmas tournament is back.
Looking forward to it.
Tickets to the Hardwood Classic are $12 for adults and $6 for children and students under 18 with valid ID. Children under 3 get in free. Parking is also included in the ticket price.
Day One Schedule: Queens Grant girls vs. Hickory Ridge, 9 a.m.; Queens Grant vs. Kennedy Charter, 10:40 a.m.; Anson Senior girls vs. Berry, 12:10 p.m.; Northside Christian vs. Forestview, 1:50 p.m.; Covenant Day girls vs. Ardrey Kell, 5:10 p.m.; Mooresville vs. Ardrey Kell, 6:50 p.m.; First Assembly vs. Davidson Day, 8:30 p.m.
Davidson Day 6-4 senior Phillip Anglade suffered a season ending ACL knee injury last season. He's come back from it to lead the Patriots (11-1) to a strong start. He leads the team in scoring (13.3 ppg) and rebounding (11.4). He's receiving recruiting interest from Vermont and Charleston Southern.
Monroe sophomore guard Brandon Roddy had 29 points in his school's win over Piedmont Friday.
Butler beat East Mecklenburg 65-60 Friday to improve to 5-3, 4-0 in the Southwestern 4A under new coach Donald Kirby. Butler has won four straight games this season and 23 straight conference games. This week, Butler handed Berry its first loss. In the East Meck win, Zach Ferguson had 28 points, 11 rebounds and 3 blocks.
Vance has always kind of been known as Point Guard U, turning out greats like Jacoby Davis, Braxton Ogbueze (Florida commit now at United Faith) and Marquis Rankin (Virginia Tech). The latest in the line could be 6-foot sophomore Derick Brewer. He had 33 points, 4 rebounds against Butler Dec. 6, 25 points against South Meck Dec. 7 and 24 points and 3 assists against Hough Dec. 9.