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Matt Piper and Kyle Goon
Matt Piper and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune. Matt Piper is on twitter at @matthew_piper, Kyle Goon is on twitter at @kylegoon

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Vegas looks like home for future Pac-12 tournaments

The Pac-12 will hold a press conference Tuesday at noon MT to announce the future of the conference's men's basketball tounament, but it's not giving anything away just yet.

Unless you count the fact the announcement will be made at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas a hint.

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Barring an unthinkable twist — Larry Scott has a player's card? Maybe tickets to David Copperfield — the Pac-12 Tournament will move to the MGM Grand Garden Arena starting in 2012, ending an 11-year run at Staples Center in Los Angeles. The last Pac-12 Tournament at Staples ended on Saturday, with newcomer Colorado stunning the field to earn the conference's automatic bid to the Pac-12.

A move to the MGM Grand doesn't come as a surprise. Organizers in Salt Lake City had pushed to host the tournament, but said last week that the tide appeared to be moving toward Vegas and the 16,800-seat arena.

The Pac-12 becomes the fourth conference with a tournament in Las Vegas, joining the Mountain West, WAC and WCC.

Clearing the path toward a Vegas tournament, the Pac-12 announced Monday that the women's tournament will be held in Seattle starting next season. This year the women's tournament was held concurrently with the men's, with the women playing the first two rounds at USC's Galen Center and joining the men at Staples for the semifinal and final rounds.

— Bill Oram



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