January 17, 2017
On November 5, the AGBU Toronto Sports & Youth Committee (SYC) held its 2016 Sports Alumni Gala to commemorate the 110th anniversary of the AGBU. The event brought together generations of the basketball club’s players, coaches, volunteers and supporters. The club also inaugurated its own Hall of Fame and inducted Armenak Alajajian, the most decorated Armenian basketball player of all time who set the standard for Armenian basketball around the world. He was a member of the Soviet Union National Team which earned the silver medal in the 1964 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo and led his team to a combined three European Champions Cups and eight USSR National Titles. Arriving in Toronto in 1974, Alajajian became a great contributor to AGBU as an athlete, community leader and philanthropist, leading the AGBU Senior Men’s team as a player and coach from 1974 to 1994. To induct Alajajian, the SYC assembled members of the 1980 Senior Men’s team, which included five players who played at the university level in Canada. In attendance were also Rex Kalamian, Assistant Head Coach of the Toronto Raptors, and Varouj Gurunlian, a former member of the Canadian National Basketball Team. The new Hall of Fame will recognize individuals who have made profound contributions to the sports program. A plaque will be commissioned and will be permanently displayed in the Babayan Gymnasium at the Alex Manoogian Cultural Centre.