GATINEAU, Quebec (August 10, 2022) -- The Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL) announced the winners of the 2022 CEBL Awards at an event at Casino Lac Leamy in Gatineau, Quebec on Wednesday evening. Niagara River Lions guard Khalil Ahmad took top honours as the 2022 CEBL Most Valuable Player, while Caleb Agada of the Hamilton Honey Badgers was named CEBL Canadian Player of the Year. Hamilton’s Ryan Schmidt was named CEBL Coach of the Year.
The 2022 CEBL award winners are as followed:
Most Valuable Player: Khalil Ahmad (Niagara)
Canadian Player of the Year: Caleb Agada (Hamilton)
Coach of the Year: Ryan Schmidt (Hamilton)
Sixth Man of the Year: Koby McEwen (Hamilton)
Defensive Player of the Year: EJ Onu (Niagara)
U SPORTS Player of the Year: Thomas Kennedy (Fraser Valley)
Clutch Player of the Year: Khalil Ahmad (Niagara)
Ahmad averaged a league-high 20.7 points, team-high 4.5 assists, and 1.9 steals (fourth best in the league), while shooting 45% from the field on his way to earning the Most Valuable Player honours. He was also fourth for Niagara in rebounds per game (4.0) and led the River Lions to a 13-7 record and second place finish in the CEBL’s regular season standings.
Hamilton’s Agada earned Canadian Player of the Year honours after averaging 12.7 points, 6.0 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 2.1 steals in 19 games. Agada ranked third in the league in assists per game (5.2) and second in steals. He also led his team in rebounds and assists as Hamilton secured the top seed in the CEBL 2022 regular season.
Schmidt won the CEBL Coach of the Year award as he led Hamilton to a 14-6 record and first place finish in the regular season standings. Schmidt has led the Honey Badgers to the semifinals of Championship Weekend for the second time in his three seasons with the club and has a career record of 26-26 (.619).
Guard Koby McEwen was Hamilton’s third award winner when was tabbed as the CEBL Sixth Man of the Year. Playing in his first professional season, the Weber State graduate from Toronto averaged 12.1 points, 2.6 assists, and 1.2 steals in 19 games. He had NBA pre-draft workouts with both the Toronto Raptors and Utah Jazz in June.
EJ Onu of Niagara secured the 2022 Defensive Player of the Year honours. The 6-foot-11 forward established a new league record by averaging 3.3 blocks per game in the regular season. His contributions on the defensive side of the floor helped Niagara lead the league in blocks per game (4.9) and consistently be one of the CEBL’s best defensive teams throughout the 2022 campaign.
Thomas Kennedy of the Fraser Valley Bandits won U SPORTS Player of the Year as the University of Windsor forward averaged 14.5 points, 8.3 rebounds (third in the league) and two assists per game on 63.6 per cent shooting from the field (second in the league). In 12 regular season games Kennedy averaged 28.1 minutes per game. Kennedy will return to the Windsor Lancers this fall.
Earning a reputation as one of the top closers in the league, Ahmad also added to his awards tally as he won the Clutch Player of the Year award after scoring a league record 10 of the 13 Elam Enders for Niagara during the 2022 season.
All CEBL Award winners receive a customized ring from Jostens, the official Supplier of Awards and Rings to the CEBL, a $500 Foot Locker shopping spree, and free flights for two for one year courtesy of Flair Airlines. The CEBL Most Valuable Player also received the newly revealed CEBL Most Valuable Player Trophy. The trophy marked by an ‘X’ mounted on a maple hardwood base was inspired by CEBL’s three-time MVP Xavier Moon (2019, 2020 and 2021) who currently holds a contract with the Los Angeles Clippers. The trophy was designed by Montreal-based trophy maker, Protocole, who also designed the CEBL Championship Trophy.
Announcement of the 2022 award winners tipped off Championship Weekend in the nation’s capital where Hamilton, Niagara, Scarborough, and Ottawa are competing for the league championship. The second-seeded Niagara River Lions and third-seeded Scarborough Shooting Stars open semifinal action at 4 p.m. Friday at TD Place Arena. They’ll be followed at 7 p.m. by top-seeded Hamilton and fourth-seeded Ottawa. The winners square off Sunday at 4 p.m. in the title game. CBC will broadcast all three games nationally, with coverage of Sunday’s finale beginning at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time.
They began last Thursday with play-in games at Saskatchewan and Fraser Valley. The Saskatchewan Rattlers dethroned the two-time defending league champion Edmonton Stingers, 94-91, and the Guelph Nighthawks upset the Bandits of Fraser Valley, 90-85. Quarterfinal playoff action over the weekend saw Niagara beat Guelph, 99-78, and Scarborough edge Saskatchewan, 108-86.
In addition to the CBC broadcasts, fans can live stream all playoff games on the CEBL’s OTT streaming service CEBL+, the CEBL Mobile app for iOS and Android devices, cbcsports.ca, the free CBC Gem streaming service, the CBC Sports App for iOS and Android devices and on NXT Level Sports in the U.S. For the complete broadcast and streaming schedule, click here. All times are subject to change.
The CEBL’s fourth season began May 25 and ended August 1. A league created by Canadians for Canadians, the CEBL is the largest pro sports league in the country with 10 teams located in six provinces. It has the highest percentage of Canadian players of any professional league in the country, with 71 percent of its current rosters being Canadians. Players bring experience from the NBA, NBA G League, top international leagues, the Canadian National team program, and top NCAA programs as well as U SPORTS. The only First Division Professional League Partner of Canada Basketball, the CEBL season runs from May through August. Head to CEBL.ca for more information or follow us (@cebleague) on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, LinkedIn, Facebook & YouTube.