This year’s Maui Invitational may be in a different gym, but the level of teams playing in the 2023 version is not short on talent.
Unable to play this year at the quaint Lahaina Civic Center due to the destruction on the island of Maui from wildfires in August, this year’s tournament will instead be played in Honolulu at the Stan Sheriff Center. With quadruple the capacity, the home of the University of Hawaii basketball teams will feel a bit more spacious than the gym at Chaminade.
The Purdue Boilermakers, ranked second in the nation as of this article, are paired with #11 Gonzaga in the opening round of the tournament. The contest will mark the Boilers’ first game this season away from Mackey Arena, where they have begun the year with a 3-0 record.
The Bulldogs are 2-0 after blowout victories over Yale and Eastern Oregon on their home court.
WZBD’s coverage of the game will begin with the pre-game at 4 p.m. Indiana time, with tip-off projected to be an hour later (Noon local time in Hawaii).
#7 Tennessee will play Syracuse prior to Purdue-Gonzaga, setting up a potential game with the Vols and head coach Rick Barnes.
Barnes and Painter have faced each other twice as head coaches, with both contests going to overtime. Tennessee beat Purdue in OT in the Bahamas in November of 2017, while Painter’s Boilers knocked the Vols out of the 2019 Sweet 16. Barnes also eliminated Purdue from the 2003 NCAA Tournament en route to the Final Four when he was at Texas.
A Purdue win against Gonzaga would mean an 8 p.m. tip Tuesday night, while a loss would mean a 2:30 p.m. start time Tuesday. The tournament concludes on Wednesday. #1 Kansas, Chaminade, UCLA and #4 Marquette are on the other side of the bracket.