Ice Cube, the renowned West Coast legend, recently asserted that his BIG3 basketball league garners a greater number of TV viewers than two major sports leagues in the United States. During his appearance on Logan Paul’s IMPAULSIVE podcast, Cube discussed the challenges he faced in popularizing his three-on-three hoop league and revealed that its TV ratings surpass those of the NHL (National Hockey League) and MLS (Major League Soccer).
Cube expressed the difficulties encountered in establishing the league, stating, “It’s been hard as hell to get it going. I mean, to get people to start fighting us on these different fronts. Our ratings are better than MLS. Our ratings are better than NHL. So we got a sport that’s making noise.”
Cube further elaborated on the obstacles faced by the young league and expressed optimism about its future. He stated, “We’ve had five great seasons, so we’re planning to have our sixth, but the challenges are there for any young league. We’re just meeting them head-on, and it’s cool that people will get a chance to see what we’re going through.”
To provide fans with an unprecedented behind-the-scenes perspective, Ice Cube will star in and produce a docuseries about BIG3, scheduled for release this summer. The series, produced in partnership with Jesse Collins Entertainment, aims to showcase the journey of BIG3 as it strives to become one of the most popular three-on-three leagues worldwide.
In October of last year, the former N.W.A legend accused the NBA and ESPN of deliberately disregarding or attempting to destroy BIG3, although he refrained from providing specific details. In an interview with Basketball News, Cube remarked, “The NBA hasn’t been the nicest to the BIG3. Of course, publicly, they say all the right words. But we know privately. There are things done behind the scenes with sponsors, broadcasters, blah blah blah… It did tarnish my fandom a bit.”
The upcoming 2023 BIG3 season is set to commence on June 25, featuring games across various cities such as Chicago, Charlotte, Dallas, NYC, Detroit, Memphis, and Miami over a span of ten weeks. Ice Cube expressed excitement about the return to full-sized arenas, stating, “After two years of a semi-touring model, we are finally able to safely return to cities nationwide and bring the BIG3 back to the size of arenas where our fans want us the most.”
The league anticipates delivering its best season yet, with games being broadcasted on CBS and Paramount+. The 2023 BIG3 Championship Game is scheduled for August 26.