Approximately 2,500 fans were in attendance on Wednesday night in Coleman Coliseum as the 2017-18 Alabama men’s basketball team gave its first public performance in an open practice for the fans. The event was a sendoff of sorts, as the Crimson Tide departs for its eight day, three-game trip to Canada on Friday afternoon.

“This was unbelievable,” head coach Avery Johnson said. “I didn’t really have any expectations in terms of the size of the crowd, I was just hoping a few people would show up on a Wednesday night in Tuscaloosa.

“I love the quick pace. You saw a little bit of a difference in our speed. I’m really pleased with the way we are trying to get the ball up the floor.”

Johnson was mic’d up during the nearly hour-long session, which included team situational drills among other things and ended with an entertaining back-and-forth intrasquad scrimmage game that brought the large crowd to its feet on several occasions.

Following the practice, Johnson introduced his team and staff and took questions from the audience before ending the evening.

Alabama’s trip to Canada will take place Aug. 4-11 and includes stops in Montreal and Ottawa. The Tide’s first game will be played on Aug. 7 against McGill University at 7 p.m. ET (6 p.m. CT) in Montreal. The Tide will then play a pair of games in Ottawa, beginning with a contest on Aug. 9 at Carleton University at 7 p.m. ET (6 p.m. CT) followed by facing the University of Ottawa on Aug. 10 at 6:30 p.m. ET (5:30 p.m. CT).

The games against McGill and Ottawa will be live streamed on the internet, while RollTide.com will have daily features, including recaps, video highlights, photos and more from each day the team spends in Canada.