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NBA Expands Second Annual Jr. NBA Global Championship

The National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced details of the second annual Jr. NBA Global Championship, a youth basketball tournament for the top 13- and 14-year-old boys and girls teams from around the world that will be held Aug. 6-11 at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World near Orlando, Fla.  Thirty-two teams will participate in a week of on-court competition and off-court programming centered on the Jr. NBA’s core values of teamwork, respect, determination and community.

The NBA will introduce a new layer of local competitions, including more than 20 local tournaments – 14 of which will be hosted by NBA teams in their respective markets – to expand the pool of participating boys and girls teams in the U.S. The Dallas Mavericks will host a local qualifying tournament and teams that win at The Sportsplex Dallas, March 22-24th, 2019, will receive an automatic bid to Jr. NBA Global Championship South Regional Tournament in Dallas, June 7-9th, 2019. 

Long-time league partner and leading basketball stakeholder USA Basketball will enhance all domestic competitions and help increase accessibility by accrediting local tournaments, again licensing participating coaches, supporting all eight U.S. regional tournaments and promoting best practices through the implementation of the NBA and USA Basketball Youth Guidelines.

Qualifying competitions will tip off in January 2019 and run through June 2019.  In the U.S., the winning boys and girls teams from each of the new local tournaments will advance to one of eight regional tournaments in the spring.

The international competition, which will once again leverage the Jr. NBA’s extensive global reach, will expand to additional countries and territories. Top players from the Caribbean will now have the opportunity to compete alongside players from South America for a chance to represent Latin America in the Jr. NBA Global Championship. The Asia Pacific regional competition will expand to include youth from Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

The winning boys and girls teams from each of the eight U.S. regional tournaments (Central, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Northeast, Northwest, South, Southeast and West) and the boys and girls teams representing the eight international regions (Africa, Asia Pacific, Canada, China, Europe & Middle East, India, Latin America, and Mexico) will receive all-expenses-paid trips to compete in the culminating event in Orlando.  U.S. teams will have the opportunity to register online for a chance to compete in their respective regional tournament.

The Jr. NBA Global Championship will feature boys and girls divisions, separated into U.S. and international brackets that begin with round-robin play and continue with single-elimination competition.  The winners of the U.S. and international brackets will play in the global championship games on Aug. 11.

FOX and FS1 will televise the Jr. NBA Global Championship in the U.S. as part of the multiyear partnership launched last year, while Tencent, the Exclusive Official Digital Partner of the NBA in China, and China Mobile Migu, the Official Telecom Carrier Immersion Platform of the NBA in China, will livestream the Jr. NBA Global Championship in China.  Additional international media partners will be announced at a later date.

More than 300 boys and girls from 35 countries participated in the inaugural Jr. NBA Global Championship in August 2018.  During the weeklong event, all 32 teams participated in off-court activities including life skills sessions, Disney park visits, a community service project, and educational meetings with current and former NBA and WNBA players and coaches.  The Central girls (Kansas City, Mo.) defeated the Europe girls team 68-38, while the Central boys (Overland Park, Kan.) defeated the Africa & Middle East boys team 60-50 in the global championship games.

More information about the Jr. NBA Global Championship and dates for the U.S. regional tournaments can be found atJrNBA.com/GlobalChampionship.  Registration for teams to compete in the Jr. NBA Global Championship is not yet open but those that sign up online will be notified as soon as registration information is available.

QUOTES:

NBA President, Social Responsibility & Player Programs Kathy Behrens:

“We are looking forward to building on the success of the inaugural Jr. NBA Global Championship to host another best-in-class event.  The expanded programming and new strategic partnerships will allow more youth players from around the world to participate in this year’s event and have the opportunity to showcase their talents on a global stage.”

USA Basketball Chairman and Jr. NBA Leadership Council Chairman Retired General Martin E. Dempsey

“The Jr. NBA Global Championship is taking another positive step forward by bringing together several of basketball’s leading stakeholders to advance and grow the game at the youth level.  The expanded Jr. NBA Global Championship, along with the USA Basketball U.S. Open Basketball Championships, will continue to promote age-appropriate rules, playing standards and safe play to help young players develop on and off the court.”

Three-time NBA Champion and Jr. NBA Global Championship Ambassador Dwyane Wade:

“I attended last year’s Jr. NBA Global Championship and it was incredible to witness the talent and passion displayed by boys and girls from around the world.  This event offers a unique opportunity for young players to learn about different cultures while bonding through their love of the game.”

WNBA Champion and Jr. NBA Global Championship Ambassador Candace Parker:

“I’m thrilled to return as an ambassador for the Jr. NBA Global Championship, which is an amazing showcase and development opportunity for talented young players.  I’m proud to support a program that will help advance the growth of girls basketball at all levels.”  

SLOBBERKNOCKER × Wrestling Biography

The Wrestling Biography You’ve Been Waiting For!

SLOBBERKNOCKER

My Life in Wrestling

Jim Ross With Paul O’Brien


There are few people who have been in the wrestling business longer than Jim Ross. And those who have made it as long as he has (half a century to be exact) probably made enemies or burned bridges. But that’s just not JR.

Slobberknocker is the story of how an Oklahoman farm kid, with a vivid imagination and seemingly unattainable dreams, became “The Voice of Wrestling” to record TV audiences and millions of fans around the world.

Jim opens up about his life as an only child on a working farm, who became obsessed with professional wrestling having first seen it on his grandparent’s TV. Even though the wrestling business was notoriously secretive and wary of “outsiders,” he got a foot in the door to start a historic career, during which he held almost every job in the business—from putting up the ring to calling matches, from driving his blind, drunk boss towards revenge to consoling two naked 600 pound brothers in the shower room after a rough match.

With all those adventures and responsibilities, he’s also recognized as the man who built and nurtured a once-in-a-generation talent roster that took the WWE to new heights, including “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, Brock Lesnar, and The Rock, to name a few. Readers will finally get the opportunity to hear never-before-told stories about the politics, wackiness, and personalities of all the biggest stars.

But this isn’t just a wrestling story. It’s a story about overcoming adversity and achieving your dreams, as success did not come without significant costs and unforeseen challenges to JR, including multiple bouts of severe facial paralysis called Bell’s Palsy.  

Currently the host of the podcast The Ross Report, any fan of wrestling—from the territory days to today—will be enthralled with stories from the road and behind the scenes. Slobberknocker is the first time Ross tells his story—and you don’t want to miss it! 

About the Authors 

Jim Ross has been involved in professional wrestling for more than forty years. Elected into the WWE, NWA, and National Wrestling Halls of Fame, he is known and respected throughout the wrestling world. Ross is also a New York Times bestselling author, a BBQ guru, and the host of his own podcast (The Ross Report), and he can be read through his columns on Fox Sports as well as his work with CBS Sports, AXS TV, and Britain’s ITV. 

Paul O’Brien is an award-winning filmmaker and bestselling author from Wexford, Ireland. His Blood Red Turns Dollar Green novels—a crime trilogy set in wrestling’s territory days—have been bestsellers in Canada, Australia, Germany, Mexico, Spain, Italy, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and the United States. Paul is currently developing those novels for TV. 

Vincent K. McMahon is the chairman and CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. A third-generation sports entertainment promoter, he has built the WWE into the top wrestling organization in the world, including taking the company public in 1999. 

“Stone Cold” Steve Austin is a Hall of Fame wrestler, most known for his time in the WWE, and is one of the most popular stars in the genre’s long history. He held 19 championships during his career, while being the leader of the illustrious “Attitude Era.” Austin hosts Broken Skull Challenge, his successful podcast The Steve Austin Show, and is the New York Times bestselling author of The Stone Cold Truth, which he wrote with Jim Ross and Dennis Brent. 

To obtain a review copy or to arrange an interview with the author, please contact: Emmie Twombly / (802) 579-1352 / etwombly@skyhorsepublishing.com



Slobberknocker 

My Life in Wrestling 

By Jim Ross with Paul O’Brien 

Sports Publishing hardcover 

On Sale: October 3, 2017 

ISBN: 978-1-68358-113-0 

Price: $24.99