Potawatomi Fire vs Los Angeles Ignite (TBL Regional Finals Game 2)

The Basketball League June 15, 2024 - 7:00 pm
FireLake Arena


Fire 120 Ignite 96

SHAWNEE, OK – For the second consecutive season, the Potawatomi Fire are the West Region Champions in TBL. The Fire beat the LA Ignite 120-96 on Saturday night to finish off the sweep of LA and claim the West Region crown.

With the win, the Fire continued their perfect season and moved to 26-0 on the year.

“I was really proud of the way our guys played,” said Fire head coach Mark Dannhoff. “LA came out strong in the first quarter and really knocked us out of our game but the guys responded, and we were able to rebound with a big second quarter to take control.”

In the first quarter, the Fire struggled to get going. LA jumped out to an early 7-0 lead before the Fire were able to get on the scoreboard. LA continued to grow their lead in the first extending it out to as many as 12 before taking an 11-point lead in the second quarter.

In the second quarter, it was all Potawatomi as the Fire started the quarter on a 17-0 run to take the lead. From there, they never looked back. Throughout the rest of the second quarter, the Fire extended their lead to 16 (59-43) going into halftime. From that point on, LA never got back within single digits of the Fire.

Several players had big nights for the Fire, with three players recording double-doubles. MVP candidate Chuck Guy recorded his 12th double-double of the season with 16 points and 14 assists. Guy is now 19 assists shy of becoming the first player to reach 1,000 assists in a TBL career. Sixth Man of the Year candidate Ricky Artis II recorded his ninth double-double of the season with 25 points and 13 rebounds. Artis also had three assists and a pair of steals. Deshawn Munson recorded his 10th double-double of the season with 24 points and 18 rebounds. He also dished out four assists for the Fire.

Along with those three, two other Fire players finished in double-digit scoring. K.D. Moore just missed a double-double with 23 points, nine rebounds, and three steals. Finally, Paul Harrison had another strong showing with 25 points and seven boards.

A full box score is available here.

“I thought all of our guys played well tonight,” said Dannhoff. “Munson has really found his rhythm in these playoffs. Ricky always brings energy off the bench for us and Chuck is Chuck. He’s going to do whatever he needs to do to help us win. But it was a team effort. K.D. played well despite getting a bit frustrated early on and Paul had another big night for us. Beyond those guys, I thought Jachai Simmons played well on the defensive end and rebounded well tonight and Ruston Hayward came in a gave us some good minutes and good energy.”

Prior to the game, TBL President David Magley and CEO Evelyn Magley presented Dannhoff with the TBL Coach of the Year award. With the honor, Dannhoff became the first TBL coach to win the Coach of the Year award twice. Dannhoff also won the award last year as he led the Fire to their first TBL Championship.

“I’m honored the Magley’s gave me this award,” said Dannhoff. “This award is really a testament to all the hard work the players put in. They are the ones on the court playing the games and this award is truly a team award.”

At halftime, the Potawatomi Fire Girls were honored with the award for Best Dance Team in the Central Conference. This is the second straight year the Fire Girls won that award.

With the win, the Fire moved to 26-0 on the season and booked their trip to the TBL Finals where they will play either the St. Louis Griffons or the Raleigh Firebirds. Dates, times, and locations for that series should be announced Sunday or Monday. You can watch a live stream of the TBL Finals on TBL TV. You can also listen to the games on KGFF Radio (100.9 FM/1450 AM/KGFF.com).

The Potawatomi Fire are the first professional basketball team owned by a Native American tribe (Citizen Potawatomi Nation) in Oklahoma. The Fire compete in the Central Conference of The Basketball League (TBL), a men’s professional basketball league, now with 38 teams across the U.S. and Canada. Along with winning the TBL championship in 2023, the Fire organization was named the 2022 winner of the Jim Koch Award as TBL’s Best Ran Business. The dance team of the Fire, the Fire Girls, were named TBL’s 2022 Best Dance Team and Central Conference Best Dance Team in 2023  and 2024.

The TBL season begins in February and runs through June, concluding with a championship playoff tournament. The players that make up the rosters of the TBL teams are former NCAA (Division I, II, or III) or NAIA athletes. Many have played in the NBA’s developmental G-League and/or professionally overseas.

Story by Chris Cox / Photos by Kent Bush


Date Time League Season Radio TV
June 15, 2024 7:00 pm The Basketball League 2024 KGFF TBLTV


FireLake Arena