In the Philippines, you will see basketball courts everywhere you look. On the gritty street corners in Manila, on the backyard of a house in a province, in tiny villages on an island, and even in the middle of the roads you can see a basketball court if you go here in the Philippines.
I am a Filipino and I grew up loving basketball. When I was a kid, I played in every court I can possibly play with my friends, classmates, and even people that are much older than me. Basketball is not just a game for us Filipinos, it was part of our lives when we started to fall in love with it. If you go to the Philippines you will understand what I'm talking about.
NBA Superstars LeBron James and Paul George personally experience the love of the Filipinos for the game of basketball when they went here in the Philippines. And I am here to share to you their experiences.
There is a place here in the Philippines called "The Tenement" in Taguig City. The Tenement is a basketball kingdom in Taguig hidden in an almost forgotten corner of a city lies in a fortress that literally had a basketball court on it's center. People who lives in The Tenement are survivors and it was made for the toughest and the bravest players in the country.
The Tenement is a condemned 51-year old building in Taguig City. The Philippine Government ordered the people living in the tenement to move out because the building is not in good condition anymore and a major earthquake can make the building collapse. The Government are planning to relocate them to the Province of Cavite but the people refused. They banged pots and pans and refused to vacate the seven-story building which experts said had become a virtual death trap. They love their home and they are serious about it. They are not leaving.
The National Housing Authority asked the residents to leave because the building had already been declared unsafe but the residents requested to the Department of Public Works and Highways to conduct a study and the result was positive. The Department of Public Works and Highways said that the structure only needs retrofitting.
In 2015, LeBron James visited the Philippines for his Nike Rise Manila tour. As part of LeBron's tour, he visited The Tenement and interacted with some of the local kids and left his hand print on a slab of concrete. LeBron stayed in The Tenement for only around 30 minutes and watched the kids play basketball there. This event gathered kids from around the country for a training camp and help them realize their basketball dreams. It was a very important event for the Filipinos, seeing the best player in the world inspire them and visit them.
LeBron looks very happy from what he saw in his visit even if it's just about 30 minutes. He was happy to see the kids loving the game of basketball and he was very glad to experience how hospitable the Filipinos are, meeting him with a very heartwarming welcome.
Paul George also visited The Tenement and it's the same experience. He also took photos with the kids and play a little inspiring them to continue and pursue their basketball dreams.
The Tenement court is now very famous that there was even a Nike shoe inspired by the Tenement Court. Wow. Many basketball players honed their skills in the streets under the urban concrete courts and these locations inspired Nike for their latest Hyperdunk Shoe.
The rough, rugged, hidden in a 7-story housing project that houses thousands of families tenement court is a representation of how crazy Filipinos are over basketball. And Nike decided to honor their passion for the game of basketball with a special edition shoe together with five other locations that make the Nike Basketball HyperFam collection.
The Nike Hyperdunk 2017 “Manila” highlighted the Tenement’s iconic look in its all-gray upper and concrete-style midsole. The colors and graphics used on this special edition shoe reflect Manila’s street courts and competitive playground.
It also features Nike’s latest cushioning breakthrough, the Nike React, which gives the shoe a surprising combination of comfort, support, and responsive energy return that suits the Pinoy style of play on Manila’s concrete street courts. It will be very comfortable to use especially in the rough streets of Manila.
The Professor Discovers the Filipino Basketball Fever
Grayson Boucher or also known as "The Professor" also visits the Philippines and discovered the Filipino basketball fever. Basketball has taken over the country in the Philippines and The Professor was amazed of how people in the Philippines value the game.
The Professor has been playing the game for more than fifteen years and the Philippines for him is one of the best countries that have a great passion for basketball. Philippines is basketball and the country was taken over by the game. You will even see kids doing a cross over even without a ball, posting up each other and do their post moves only with their imaginary ball. That's how crazy we are about basketball.
If there is no basketball in the Philippines, kids will get driven to bad vices that's why basketball saves life. That was a statement said by one of the people The Professor had interviewed. Kids nowadays are addicted to basketball and they spend more time playing. It's better that way because they can avoid bad vices and just focus on playing basketball and studying. It was very meaningful and true. You can also learn things in basketball that you can apply outside the court. Discipline, respect and leadership. That's how we value the game. Basketball is a lifestyle in the Philippines.
Here is the video of The Professor visiting the Philippines. Please have some time to watch. It was very amazing. Thanks guys! :)