By Zachary Baru
The 2018 NCAA Men's Basketball East Regional at TD Garden may not have had any local teams, but last weekend the venue included a lot more of the city than the previous time the tournament stopped in Boston.
Actually, you could multiply the Boston influence by 23 times to be exact. That's because in 2012, the last time TD Garden was chosen to host the tournament, every professional championship banner had to be removed.
NCAA regulations forced TD Garden to remove the banners of professional teams. This was a little bit of a problem for a venue that is home to 6 Stanley Cup championships for the Bruins, and 17 World Championships for the Boston Celtics.
Although the famed parquet floor was not allowed, or any other local floor throughout the tournament, at least the banners gave the tournament's stop in Boston a little bit of a local feel. Not to mention a small Boston College logo on the corner of the court, given to the school for being the host of the East Regional.
The tournament also helped the city economically, and in impressive fashion. The two-night, three-game event last weekend was projected to bring in $25 million in economic impact, filling hotels, restaurants, shops and other establishments throughout the city.
The NCAA Tournament provided a big economic boost for the city, a reminder to all sports fans worldwide that Boston can be a great host city, and an amazing weekend for basketball fans throughout the region. And yes, a reminder to all sports fans watching about the 23 titles that will forever live in The Garden.
Zach Baru can be followed on Twitter @zbaru and reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.