February 12, 2017
FORT WAYNE, Indiana – The excitement of Fort Wayne Mad Ants basketball will reach more people than ever, when the team debuts its telecasts on WANE-TV in a game against the Erie Bayhawks. The Mad Ants broadcast team of Bill Hazen and Jaren Jackson will describe the action.
The telecast is the first of several scheduled to air over WANE-TV's digital channel 15.2, which carries Tribune's Antenna TV Network. This becomes the team's second move to increase market exposure through the mass media. Earlier, the Mad Ants announced an agreement with Federated Media to air several broadcasts of their games over WKJG Radio (commonly known as “ESPN 1380”). WKJG will also carry this game broadcast.
“I'm excited to bring Mad Ants basketball into our fans living rooms, said Mad Ants team President Tim Bawmann. “WANE-TV has helped make this a reality!”
Under second-year coach Steve Gansey, the Mad Ants are enjoying a very exciting season in the NBA Development League. Gansey, the D-League's “Coach of the Month” for November, has guided the Mad Ants into strong playoff contention with one of the league's best overall records.
“This is very compelling basketball,” said Mad Ants broadcaster Bill Hazen. “In many ways, this team reminds me of the Mad Ants championship team.
“The athletic skills are fantastic, and there's outstanding leadership on the court. Having broadcast in the NBA for a number of years, I can tell you without question the D-League replicates the real NBA experience.”
The Mad Ants feature a broadcast team with plenty of NBA experience in their own right. Hazen is a former NBA broadcaster for the Houston Rockets, Chicago Bulls (Michael Jordan's first TV announcer), Indiana Pacers and ESPN International. Jackson, former coach of the Mad Ants, carved out a solid NBA career culminating in an NBA championship with the San Antonio Spurs in the 1998-1999 season. He also played with seven other NBA teams.