Over the weekend, USA Basketball and Nike partnered up to put on one of the best events of the year in Chicago—the World Basketball Festival. It doesn’t come around that often, so when it does, we’re sure to enjoy it. We were in Chitown all week long as Team USA prepared for a Saturday night exhibition against Brazil (a 95-78 victory) and interacted with fans and the community.
On Thursday night, opening ceremonies at the Chicago Park District’s 63rd Street Beach House kicked things off, as the entire 2014 USA Basketball Men’s National Team got a little pep rally going with hundreds of fans on the shores of Lake Michigan. Friday, Nike launched a series of Chi Talks—you know, like Ted Talks—including speakers like Angela Davis, Scoop Jackson, Scottie Pippen, Sheryl Swoopes and Common. Not to mention all the basketball action going on in the city of Chicago, like the Nike Global Challenge (high school stars from around the world competed at Whitney Young High School), FIBA 3×3 Tournament, Chi-League Finals and Tournament of Champions (featuring the best streetball players from New York, Chicago, L.A. and DC).
Also at the Beach House, fans had a chance to wear-test the Air Jordan XX9 and the Nike Hyperdunk 2014. Anthony Davis, James Harden, Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan even stopped by to host free skills clinics with local kids. Check out the photos above for a sampling of what we saw in Chicago for #WBFCHI. Team USA is in New York for two more exhibitions this week, before the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup tips off in Spain on August 30.
Images via Nike