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Renovated MVP Arena prepares to host Albany's first NCAA men's basketball tournament games since 2003

WAMC's Ian Pickus got a behind-the-scenes tour of MVP Arena as it prepares for the return of the NCAA Tournament.

MVP Arena in Albany is getting ready to host the NCAA men’s basketball tournament for the first time in 20 years starting March 17. The Albany County-owned venue was supposed to host the tourney in March of 2020 until COVID canceled the entire bracket. It has undergone millions of dollars in upgrades in recent years.

Now, after several NCAA women’s basketball tournaments in Albany, the arena is getting ready to show off a number of upgrades to visitors from around the country during March Madness. Arena general manager Bob Belber and Albany County Executive Dan McCoy take us on a tour from the luxury suites to the locker rooms.

A lifelong resident of the Capital Region, Ian joined WAMC in late 2008 and became news director in 2013. He began working on Morning Edition and has produced The Capitol Connection, Congressional Corner, and several other WAMC programs. Ian can also be heard as the host of the WAMC News Podcast and on The Roundtable and various newscasts. Ian holds a BA in English and journalism and an MA in English, both from the University at Albany, where he has taught journalism since 2013.
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