SHAWNEE, OK – The Potawatomi Fire are pleased to announce the re-signing of Ricardo Artis II for the upcoming 2024 TBL season.
Artis II, a 6-6 forward, is originally from Austin, Texas. He averaged 7.8 points and 3.3 rebounds in 12 games for the Fire last season. Artis II joined the team in May following a successful season overseas in Germany.
Prior to joining the Fire last season, Artis II played in The Basketball League for the Dallas Skyline (2020 and 2021) and the Enid Outlaws (2022). Through four TBL seasons, Artis II is averaging 18.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. In his TBL career, Artis II shooting 59.0% from the field, 33.3% from three, and 75.4% from the free throw line. Along with playing in TBL, Artis II has played professionally in Germany and Canada. He’s also played domestically in the PBA and UBA.
“We are excited to have Ricky back for this season,” said Fire general manager David Qualls. “We saw, in limited action, what he could do for the team last year and are ready see what he can do for a full year in a Fire uniform. He’s a player that brings a lot of excitement and draws the fans into the game. Not only is Ricky a great basketball player but he’s a great entertainer who knows how to play to a crowd.”
“I’m thrilled to have Ricky back for this season,” said Fire head coach, and 2023 TBL Coach of the Year, Mark Dannhoff. “He’s a versatile player that can play multiple positions. Ricky plays with an intensity and commitment to defense that is not matched by many. It’s that effort on defense that opens things for him on the offensive end. I’m excited to work with him once again and glad to have him for a full season.”
Artis II is the sixth player to re-sign with the Fire following the championship in 2023. He joins fellow returners Daylon “Chuck” Guy, Deshawn Munson, Kierre “K.D.” Moore, Terry “T.J.” Maston, and Chris Brand. The Fire have also signed newcomers Jachai Simmons and Myron McGowan. Their roster now officially sits at eight players.
The Fire will begin their 2024 TBL season in March. Season tickets for the upcoming season are set to go on sale soon.
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 over 50 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.
The TBL season begins in March 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. As of late June, this is currently the highest level of basketball still active in the state of Oklahoma and just two steps below the NBA.