The Moncton Miracles rebounded from a dismal 2012 season and earned a spot in the National Basketball League playoffs for the first time in the franchise's two-year history.
The National Basketball League of Canada team will tip off against the Saint John Mill Rats on Tuesday night at the Moncton Coliseum in a best-of-three series.
Isaac Butts, a rookie centre on the team, said making the playoffs this year with a record of 20 wins and 20 losses is a big accomplishment for the Miracles.
"Considering where the team was last year and then where we are this year, it's huge," said Butts.
'The championship — that's the only record, that's the only goal we've got in mind — win this championship' —Devin Sweetney, Moncton Miracles
Forward Devin Sweetney said he is confident his team will do well against the rival Saint John Mill Rats.
"We've got a good group of unselfish guys, you know we work hard and it just means everything to us to have the ability to play in the playoffs," Sweetney said.
The Mill Rats also finished the season with a record of 20 wins and 20 losses.
Moncton-Saint John rivalry
As a rookie, Butts said he has watched the rivalry develop over the season between the Miracles and the Mill Rats. But he said the team is working hard at practice and is "beyond ready."
The Moncton Miracles ended the regular season with a five-game winning streak to earn a spot in the playoffs.
Sweetney led the team in that rally, setting four league records, including 56 points in the last game against the Montreal Jazz.
The Miracles forward said right now he's not thinking about individual stats.
"The championship — that's the only record, that's the only goal we've got in mind — win this championship," Sweetney said.
The playoff series starts in Moncton on Tuesday and the second and, if needed, third game will both be played in Saint John.
The winner of the series will take on number one ranked London in the semi-finals.