Prep Stars Participating in International Games
The Nike Global Challenge and Adidas Nations Basketball Experience are both taking place this weekend. The concept behind both events is similar; an eight team international tournament featuring some of the best young players around the world.
With similar events and overlapping dates, the battle between the shoe companies to attract the top young players is now just as intense in August as it has traditionally been in July.
The Nike Global Challenge, in conjunction with USA Basketball, began on Friday, August 8th and will conclude on Sunday the 10th in Hillsboro, Oregon. The eight team field includes three American teams as well as teams from Canada, Serbia, Lithuania, Puerto Rico, and Senegal. The Global Challenge is intended to be the culmination of Nike’s summer season with the 30 American players being selected based on their performance at the Lebron James Skills Academy and preceding positional skills academies with NBA stars Steve Nash, Paul Pierce, Vince Carter, and Amare Stoudamire. New England products Alex Oriakhi, Phil Pressey, and Dion Waiters will join the likes of Mason Plumlee, Demarcus Cousins, Abdul Gaddy, Michael Gilchrist, and John Wall to make up the three U.S. teams.
The Adidas Nations in conjunction with Peace Players International is hosting the Adidas Basketball Experience, which began on Thursday the 7th and will continue until Tuesday the 12th in Dallas, Texas. Adidas will also welcome an 8 team field, including two American teams – USA 2009 and USA 2010. Africa, Asia (two teams), Canada, Europe, and Latin America will also be represented. Each of the teams has already met during the course of the year for a regional training camp which included numerous training sessions on the court as well as instruction on nutrition and how to deal with the media along with a community service component. 16 NBA players and coaches will be acting as head coaches and team members for each team. Rhode Island native and St. Mark’s star Erik Murphy will be featured on the USA 2009 team where he will be joined by the likes of Derrick Favors, Lance Stephenson, and Dexter Strickland.