Grand Rapids Gold ‘ready to get going’ in West Michigan


Grand Rapids Gold’s mascot, Hopper at Founders Brewing Co. on Monday, Oct. 25, 2021.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Grand Rapids Gold President Steve Jbara couldn’t help but smile when he looked out at the crowd gathered at Founders Brewing Co.

With COVID-19 bringing things to a halt for the NBA G League in 2020, it felt good to see the fans after a hard year on the organization.

Not only was this a sign of semiprofessional basketball being back in Grand Rapids, but doing so with a new logo, team name and jerseys.

“We’re thrilled to share these new jerseys with our fans and with our community,” Jbara said. “As our season draws near, we’re ready to get back on the court. This is another step towards returning to play, and we couldn’t be more excited.”

The Gold are an affiliate of the Denver Nuggets, which Grand Rapids announced back in April.

On Aug. 19, Grand Rapids announced that it would be hiring 19-year NBA veteran Jason Terry as the head coach.

Terry said it was an opportunity he couldn’t turn down.

“It’s an honor and blessing to be able to teach and mentor hopefully the future generation of NBA players,” Terry said. “What better place to be than West Michigan right here in Grand Rapids, a beautiful city with a great community and fan base.”

Terry played in 1,410 NBA games in his career, the ninth most in NBA history. The 2018 NBA retiree had a career average of 13.4 points, 2.3 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game. He knocked down 2,282 career 3-pointers, the seventh most all-time. He was the assistant general manager of the G League member Texas Legends and spent 2020-21 as an assistant coach with his alma mater Arizona. 

The Seattle native spent time living in Texas and Arizona recently and couldn’t be more excited to get back to an area more similar to his hometown.

“I’m looking forward to a nice winter,” Terry said laughing. “In the fall you get the red and orange leaves, like this is what I grew up on.”

The Gold had a draft for the 2021-22 team that Terry was excited to be a part of developing.

One player, in particular, he is looking forward to coaching is nine years of NBA experience is Lance Stevenson, who the Gold took 13th overall in the first round.

“He understands what it takes to be in the NBA,” Terry said. “He will have a great impact on not only our young guys but the team in general. We’re counting on him to produce and if you know Lance the way I do, he’s going to put on a show.”

Terry, Jbara and other members of the organization showed their excitement about doing basketball in this community during the jersey presentation Monday evening. They unveiled the jerseys on a video presentation and had their mascot Hooper come out wearing it.

The Gold have blue jerseys with red trim and gold lettering for home games and white jerseys with blue trim and red lettering for away games. They have six alternate jerseys to come for promotional home games in the future.

The 2021-22 NBA G League season begins on Nov. 5 with the Showcase Cup, a 14-game competition featuring all 29 G League teams and the NBA G League Ignite. It combines the NBA G League Winter Showcase with the Showcase Cup Championship Game. All NBA G League team records will reset on Dec. 27 with the start of a traditional 36-game regular season.

The Gold will have its home opener on Nov. 23 when it will host none other than it’s in-state rival Motor City Cruise.

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