KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — On Wednesday, Kalamazoo’s newest basketball team made a slew of announcements, including where they will call home.

Come 2023, the Kalamazoo Wings will be sharing its home at the Wings Event Center, which will once again feature both hockey and hoops. Michigan’s newest The Basketball League affiliate, the Kalamazoo Galaxy, signed a contract with the Wings Event Center this week to call its main arena its home court.

Galaxy President and CEO Brian Marais says this decision was an easy one.

“(The Wings) have been around for many years, and they’ve done it right in the eyes of the community with families, so (it’s) beyond just the location,” Marais said. “What they stand for in our community, that really embodies what (the) Kalamazoo Galaxy represents. That’s really the main driver for us wanting to collaborate with the Wings and really getting this deal done.”

Wings Event Center General Manager Rob Underwood added that having another sports franchise in-house will help keep the area busy whenever hockey and high school sports taper off.

“As we hit the summertime months, it’s still nice to have a tenant in the building that’ll keep fans coming and have less shoulder months, which will keep my employees employed, giving more businesses an opportunity, and as well as things to do in the community of Kalamazoo,” Underwood explained.

“Talking to the owners and representatives of the team, it seems like they’re a very professional organization,” he continued. “We’re excited to see the TBL here in Kalamazoo.”

But excitement over this announcement is not just confined to the walls of the Wings Event Center.

Business managers, like Rayne Shafer of Nob Hill Bar & Grill down the street, say the area is a match for a basketball franchise.

“You’ve got the hotels; you’ve got other places around us. It’s great. It’ll be nice to have a basketball team here,” Shafer said. “I think basketball is going to bring a lot more, especially the younger generations — the 20 and 30-year-olds. Because there’s nothing to do here in Kalamazoo except … the baseball games and hockey games. We need something more for Kalamazoo.”

Same for Sam D’Arc of Zeigler Auto Group, which owns Trak Houz Bar & Grill across the street from Wings Event Center and is already brainstorming specials for fans.

“You start here at the Wings (Event) Center and one day, you could be playing in the NBA. It’s exciting,” D’Arc said. “As a member of the community, as somebody that has a family, you think about your kids going to watch a game there today, and then a year or two or three or down the road to see them on the big court.”

The Galaxy also announced its first head coach, which is also a homecoming of sorts.

T.J. Buchanan will lead the team from the sidelines come March. He was most recently the director of operations for Eastern Michigan’s men’s basketball team after he played collegiately and began coaching at the University of Rhode Island.

Buchanan, a Kalamazoo native, helped lead Kalamazoo Central High School to back-to-back state championship appearances, winning it all in 2010.

Buchanan and the Galaxy will tip off for the first time at Wings Event Center in early March.

After signing five players to training camp from its first tryout, the Galaxy will also host a second tryout Saturday, Dec. 3 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Courthouse Athletic Center on Sprinkle Road.