Tag Archives: one on one

First Winner-Take-All $250,000 OBL Finals Headed to The Dollar Loan Center in Las Vegas July 15-16

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady — today announced that The Dollar Loan Center in Henderson, Nevada, will host the first-ever OBL Finals on Friday, July 15 and Saturday, July 16.

A limited number of tickets will be made available to the public for the event at https://bit.ly/OBL-LV. Friday’s event will start at 3 p.m. PDT, with the Championship Finals starting on Saturday at 8 p.m.

“Our proof-of-concept season for the OBL has played out better than we had planned, and The Dollar Loan Center is the perfect stage for us to crown our king,” said McGrady. “OBL talent is top notch, the competition is intense, and the atmosphere for our first-ever finals will be second to none with $250,000 cash on the OBL throne waiting for the winner.”
“Dreams are coming true inside the OBL and Tracy’s vision for change has been spot on,” said Jeffrey Pollack, OBL strategic advisor. “Over the last eight weeks we’ve started to demonstrate that our game has soul, our competition matters, and our events are electric. The gifted and gutsy athletes of the OBL deserve a world-class stage for our championship and that’s what we will create at The Dollar Loan Center.“

“There are few basketball legends and entrepreneurs more astute than Tracy McGrady, and we are proud to welcome his team to our new state-of-the-art arena in Henderson for the OBL’s inaugural championship,” said Kerry Bubolz, CEO of the Foley Entertainment Group, which operates The Dollar Loan Center. “In a city all about action, this promises to be the summer’s most intense event.”

The 22 qualifiers for the OBL Finals are coming to Las Vegas from Regional Championships in Houston, Atlanta, Chicago, New York, the DMV, and Los Angeles. The field was culled from over 200 entrants, including many of the best one-on-one athletes in the world with decades of professional and elite college experience. The winner of each OBL Regional took home a $10,000 cash prize, joining the second and third place finishers plus four “wild cards” with invitations to the OBL Finals. In addition to the $250,000 cash prize, the winner in the head-to-head single elimination OBL Finals will be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

The qualifiers are: Grant Anderson, Chicago (Chicago 3rd); George Beamon, Roslyn, N.Y. (Los Angeles 1st); Isaiah Brown, Queens, N.Y. (New York 1st); Yoshi Craig, Chicago (Chicago 2nd); Darien Davis, Coram, N.Y. (New York 3rd); Randy Gill, Los Angeles and Laurel, Md. (Los Angeles 3rd); Marcus Hall, Denver and Houston (Los Angeles 2nd); Antonio Hester, Miami (Atlanta 2nd); Terry Hosley, Baltimore (DMV, wild card); John Jordan, Houston (Houston 1st); Matt Kiatipis, Newmarket, Ontario (Houston 2nd); Kevin Kuteyi, Lanham, Md. (DMV 1st); Eugene Lawrence, Brooklyn, N.Y. (New York, wild card); Zach Radz, Troy, N.Y. (New York 2nd); Glen Rice Jr., Marietta, Ga. (Atlanta 1st); Ridge Shipley, Carrolton, Texas (Houston, wild card); Mario Smith, Kalamazoo, Mich. (Chicago 1st); Chris Staples, Saginaw, Mich (L.A., wild card); Myron Taylor, Killeen, Texas (Houston, 3rd); Tiras Wade, Tampa (Atlanta 3rd); Andrew Washington, Washington, D.C. (DMV 2nd); and Donte Wright, Jackson, S.C. (DMV 3rd).

OBL media partners include SHOWTIME Sports, SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions.

Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/.

cover image: Overall OBL No. 1 Seed Isaiah Brown (#11) and NYC #2 qualifier Zach Radz

Ones Basketball League Crowns L.A. Regional Champion at Pauley Pavilion, Awards $10,000 First Prize

Pauley Pavilion on the campus of UCLA is home to more than a few basketball champions. Add one more to the historic venue’s title total as the Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady — crowned its sixth and final 2022 Regional Champion in front of enthusiastic crowds on Saturday and Sunday.

A total of 32 national-level basketball players squared off in spirited action, and it was George Beamon (Roslyn, N.Y.), Marcus Hall (Denver) and Randy Gill (Los Angeles) who took the top three places in a weekend filled with close contests. The trio now qualify along with the other OBL Regional winners for the first-ever OBL Finals in Las Vegas next month.

Beamon came into the day as the No. 8 seed, needing to win four games including the 8 vs. 9 play-in to win the title and the $10,000 first prize that accompanied the championship. After edging Austin Armstead (Los Angeles) in the play-in and then dispatching No. 1 seed Jalil Abdul-Bassit (Las Vegas) and fifth-seeded Chris “Everybody Hates Chris” Staples (Woodland Hills, Calif.), the Manhattan College product won the championship by taking out the sixth-seeded Hall, 10-4, burying a two-pointer to secure the win in which his five straight points after trailing 1-0 put the New Yorker ahead to stay.

“I’m just blessed with the opportunity, and so humbled to be able to showcase my talent,” said Beamon, who came in from New York to compete in the OBL Los Angeles Regional when scheduling conflicts kept from participating in the New York Regional held in Brooklyn last month. “Cali love always and shout out to my family back home in New York who always has my back.”

Hall, a University of Colorado graduate who now splits his time between homes in his native Houston and Denver, seeded sixth entering Sunday’s play, advanced to the OBL Finals with wins over No. 3 Julius Bilbrew (Inglewood, Calif.) and a thrilling 9-7 win over Gill in the semifinals.

In the third place game for the final Las Vegas spot, 44-year-old Randy “White Chocolate” Gill, originally a Laurel, Md., native who played his collegiate ball near home at Bowie State, outlasted Staples, 9-6. Gill, who won MTV’s “Who’s Got Game” reality competition in 2003, showed superior jump shooting skill and guile in advancing to Las Vegas.

“Pauley Pavilion is a storied and classic basketball venue and we are excited and honored to have showcased our amazing OBL players in such a historic location,” said McGrady. “The competition rose to championship level with incredible games all weekend.”

The Los Angeles Regional follows successful events in Houston (April 30-May 1), Atlanta (May 7-8), Chicago (May 21-22), New York (May 28-29) and the DMV (June 4-5). Now that first-ever OBL Regional competition is complete, OBL will soon announce the field for next month’s two-day OBL Finals in Las Vegas (dates and venue TBA). The winner of each of the six Regionals earned a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will also include four “Commissioner’s Choice” wild cards for a 22-player field competing for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

OBL media partners include SHOWTIME Sports, SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions. Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/ and on Twitter and Instagram.

Ones Basketball League Crowns DMV Regional Champion and Awards $10,000 First Prize

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady — crowned its fifth Regional Champion at The St. James on Saturday and Sunday. A total of 30 top area and national-level basketball players squared off in spirited action, and it was Kevin Kuteyi (Lanham, Md.), Andrew Washington (Washington, D.C.) and Donte Wright (Jackson, S.C.) who took the top three places in a weekend filled with close contests and spirited play across the board.

Kuteyi, who came into Sunday’s play as the No. 8 seed, had to win a Play-In over Damier Pitts (Charlotte, N.C.) to advance to the quarterfinals. He then dispatched top seeded Terry Hosley (Baltimore) and upended Antonio Carter (Alexandria, Va.) with a flurry of two-pointers, 9-3, to advance to the Finals, where his hot hand from long distance erased an early 4-1 deficit to second-seeded Washington, winning going away 9-5. In the third-place contest, Wright buried two straight two-pointers to break a 6-6 tie and top Carter, 10-6. All three now advance to the OBL Finals in Las Vegas this summer (dates and location TBA).

“This world-class facility and superior level of play made the OBL DMV Regional one of our best events to date,” said McGrady. “It was great to see the guys hit so many big shots and feel the crowd’s energy and support.”

Kuteyi, who played at Chowan Univ., nicknamed “Uncle Skoob,” had one of the more vocal rooting sections at The St. James and he showed a ton of personality interacting with the crowd throughout Sunday’s play.

“I wanted to tire him out a little then turn it on,” said Kuteyi of his Championship-winning matchup with Washington. “He got the early lead on me, but I knew I could come back. I appreciate T-Mac and everyone here for the opportunity.”

Washington, also known as “Sponge Bob,” and whose quarterfinal match against Scotty Hendricks went into overtime before a hard-fought semifinal win over Wright propelled him into the final, appeared winded for parts of his matches but fought through it and promises to be ready for Las Vegas.

“I ain’t done yet,” Washington said following the final. “You’re going to see me in better shape and ready to go in Vegas.”

After a successful debut event in Houston (April 30-May 1) and follow-ups in Atlanta (May 7-8), Chicago (May 21-22), New York (May 28-29) and the DMV, OBL’s next regional event is Saturday and Sunday, June 18-19, concluding the regular season in Los Angeles (site TBA).

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the OBL Finals, which will see 21 players (the top three from each region plus three wild cards) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

OBL media partners include SHOWTIME Sports, SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions.

Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/ and on Twitter and Instagram.

Ones Basketball League Crowns New York Regional Champion and Awards $10,000 First Prize

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady — crowned its fourth Regional Champion at Major R. Owens Community Center in Brooklyn on Saturday and Sunday. A total of 28 top area and national-level basketball players squared off in spirited action, and it was Isaiah Brown (Queens), Zach Radz (Troy, N.Y.) and Darien Davis (Coram, N.Y.) who took the top three places in a weekend filled with close contests and spirited play across the board.

The sharpshooting lefty Brown, seeded at #2 after a perfect 7-0 qualifying round on Saturday, defeated Radz, 9-5, in the final game to claim the winner-take-all prize of $10,000. Davis, from Dowling College (Long Island), took out Joe Nickerson, also by a 9-5 count, to grab third place. All three now advance to the OBL Finals in Las Vegas this summer (dates and location TBA).

“New York came to play this weekend for sure,” said McGrady. “We had our biggest and loudest crowd so far in Brooklyn, and the level of play continues to be high as we get closer to the OBL Finals in Las Vegas.”

Brown, 25, played at SUNY Potsdam. He’s a basketball content creator and a proud girl dad. He has the nickname “Leaky Roof” because one uses buckets to fix them.

“My whole family came out to see me play, I can’t describe the feeling,” said Brown. “One on one basketball, for us, this is our style of basketball. I didn’t have a specific strategy going in, but the shots were there so I took them and fortunately hit them.”

Radz, who came down from the Albany are but stayed with a friend in New York during the competition, made a strong run from the #8 seeded position, needing to defeat the #9 seed Josh Treadwell (Newark, N.J.) in the “out bracket” game before two other wins propelled him into the Finals, including a two-pointer with time running down for a 9-8 upset win over previously unbeaten #1 seed Eugene Lawrence (Brooklyn).

“The last eight people down here, I knew they were tough competitors, obviously, anybody that makes it to this point,” said Radz, 25, who played at Sacred Heart University. “It was a matter of just putting it all out there and playing with all your heart.”

After a successful debut event in Houston (April 30-May 1) and follow-ups in Atlanta (May 7-8), Chicago (May 21-22) and New York, OBL’s next regional event is Saturday and Sunday, June 4-5, in the DMV (The St. James, Springfield, VA). The regular season concludes in Los Angeles (site TBD).

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the OBL Finals, which will see 18 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

OBL media partners include SHOWTIME Sports, SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions.

Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/.

Ones Basketball League Announces Content Partnership with SHOWTIME Sports

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — an elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady – today announced a content partnership with SHOWTIME Sports, the newest media distribution relationship for the start-up league.

Under its highly successful SHOWTIME® Basketball brand, SHOWTIME Sports will distribute a behind-the-scenes, all-access documentary feature for its YouTube channel capturing the story of this season through the eyes of Tracy McGrady. SHOWTIME Sports will also produce short-form digital content for distribution across its social networks from the remainder of the inaugural OBL season through the league’s Las Vegas Championship in July.

“The production and creative team at SHOWTIME Sports knows how to build and tell stories like no one else, and the detailed background and exciting drama we have already started to capture with OBL makes this content partnership a perfect fit for us,” McGrady said. “The team at SHOWTIME shares our excitement for putting a spotlight on one-on-one basketball and all of the great action, rich stories, and hyper-competition that flows from the game.”

“We believe in Tracy’s vision and are thrilled to be working with the OBL on their inaugural season,” said Brian Dailey, SVP, Sports Programming & Content, Showtime Networks Inc. “This collaboration embodies the SHOWTIME Basketball brand — premium, bold and boundary-pushing. We are delighted to welcome Tracy and the OBL team to our unmatched lineup of content and talent.”

“The early results of our proof-of-concept season look good, we love what we see on the court, and so does SHOWTIME,” said Jeffrey Pollack, OBL strategic advisor. “This content partnership with SHOWTIME Sports came together quickly and further validates Tracy’s vision for shining a bright light on the essence of basketball and celebrating the vibrant talent and culture that fuels the one-on-one community.”

SHOWTIME Sports joins SLAM Media, Playmaker and Heart and Hustle Productions’ as initial production and content partners for OBL.

Six cities across the United States are hosting a two-day, regional, 32-player round-robin knockout tournament with athletes aged 18 and up who are currently not under an NBA contract and have not been on an active NBA roster for more than 164 games (equivalent to two NBA regular seasons). The participants come from a combination of open-sourced video submissions and the advice of basketball insiders. The aim is to welcome both best-in-class talent and players who may still be under the radar of most basketball fans. The inaugural events this year will feature only men, and women will be welcomed as equal participants as soon as 2023.

The regional tournaments scheduled for the rest of the OBL season are:
· New York City, May 28-29
(Major R. Owens Community Center hosted by New Heights, Brooklyn, NY)
· The DMV, June 4-5
(The St. James, Springfield, VA)
· Los Angeles, June 18-19
(TBD)

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will see 21 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.” The regional winners from the first three events include: Glen Rice Jr. (Marietta, Ga.), Antonio Hester (Miami), and Tiras Wade (Tampa) from the Atlanta regional; John Jordan (Houston), Matt Kiatipis (Austin by way of Canada and Simon Fraser University), and Myron Taylor (Killeen, Tex.) from the Houston regional; and Mario Smith (Kalamazoo, Mich.), Yoshi Craig (Chicago), and Grant Anderson (Chicago), who took the top three places this past weekend in the Chicago regional.

More information about Ones Basketball League at: https://www.oblhoops.com/.

OBL Crowns Chicago Regional Champion at Hope Academy Athletic Center and Awards $10,000 First Prize

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady — crowned its third Regional Champion at Chicago Hope Academy Athletic Center on Saturday and Sunday. A total of 32 top area and national-level basketball players squared off in spirited action, and it was Mario Smith (Kalamazoo, Mich.), Yoshi Craig (Chicago) and Grant Anderson (Chicago) who took the top three places in a weekend filled with exciting and high-quality play across the board.

Smith, the OBL (@oblhoops) Chicago Regional Champion and recipient of the $10,000 prize, was seeded fourth after a 6-1 record on Saturday. He won the Championship match, 9-8, over Craig, making two free throws to ice the win. Anderson’s buzzer-beater over Armani Chaney earned the former Cornell (Ind.) College and Homewood-Flossmoor (Ill.) high school standout third place. All three now advance to the OBL Finals in Las Vegas this summer (dates and location TBA).

“The Chicago event was another strong step forward for us and further proof that OBL will help these athletes get known and noticed,” said McGrady. “The energy on the court was intense and the fans made themselves part of the show. Chicago brought the love for OBL and we are grateful.”

Smith, 30, the only non-local player at the OBL Chicago Regional, competed at Glen Oaks CC in Michigan, and his pro career has included stints in Mexico and the Mid-Michigan Spartans. He now trains basketball players of all ages.

“I drove back and forth last night once I knew I’d make it through,” said Smith, who traveled 2.5 hours each way, both days, to participate. “The level of competition was really strong and it was a grind but it’s very gratifying to advance.”

Craig, 28, played at Iowa Central and Kennedy-King College.

“It’s great to make it to Las Vegas,” said Craig. “I was disappointed to lose on free throws, but the two days showed that this is a concept that will work and can grow. I’m looking forward to repping Chicago in July.”

After a successful debut event in Houston (April 30-May 1) and follow-ups in Atlanta (May 7-8) and Chicago, OBL’s next regional event is Saturday and Sunday, May 28-29 at the Major R. Owens Community Center hosted by New Heights, Brooklyn, New York.

Following New York, the remainder of the regional schedule is as follows:
• The DMV, June 4-5 (The St. James, Springfield, VA)
• Los Angeles, TBD (TBD)

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will see 18 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

OBL media partners include SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions.

Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/.

Ones Basketball League Crowns Atlanta Regional Champion at CORE4 in Chamblee; Awards $10,000 Prize

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady – crowned its second Regional Champion at CORE4 in Chamblee, Georgia, on Saturday and Sunday. A total of 32 top area and national-level basketball players squared off in spirited action, and it was Glen Rice Jr. (Marietta, Ga.), Antonio Hester (Miami) and Tiras Wade (Tampa) who took the top three places in a weekend filled with exciting and high-quality play across the board.

Rice, the OBL (@oblhoops) Atlanta Regional Champion and recipient of the $10,000 prize, seeded fifth after a 6-1 record on Saturday despite an injured lower leg, won the Championship match, 9-7, over Hester, who had qualified as the #2 seed after going a perfect 7-0 in pool play. Wade, the #1 seed who was also unbeaten at 7-0 on Saturday, bested Atlanta’s Phil Taylor in the third-place game. At 40, Wade was the oldest competitor in the field. All three now advance to the OBL Finals in Las Vegas this summer (dates and location TBA).

“This league is giving players an opportunity to show what they can do, and these three guys took advantage with great play all weekend,” said McGrady. “We are proud that they will be representing the Atlanta region in Las Vegas.”

“It was fun competing with this group of guys, playing a game that we love and seeing who was the best at it,” said Rice, 31, who starred collegiately at Georgia Tech. “I don’t know where everybody came from, but the competition level was great both days. It was better than I expected.”

Tracy McGrady and Dikembe Mutombo

“It was love, man. I enjoyed this weekend and it was such a blessing to be here,” added the powerful Hester, 31, who played at Miami Dade and the University of Mobile and has competed professionally overseas for more than a decade. “Getting to compete with all these pros, it was definitely another level.”

In last week’s inaugural event in Houston, John Jordan, 29, of Houston was the champion. Jordan and H-Town Regional runner-up Matt Kiatipis were both on hand in Atlanta to take in the action. OBL’s next regional event is May 21-22 at Chicago Hope Academy Athletic Center.

Following Chicago, the remainder of the regional schedule is as follows:
• New York City, May 28-29 (Major R. Owens Community Center hosted by New Heights, Brooklyn, NY)
• The DMV, June 4-5 (The St. James, Springfield, VA)
• The Bay Area, June 11-12 (The Ultimate Fieldhouse, Walnut Creek, CA)
• Los Angeles, TBD (TBD)

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will see 21 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

OBL media partners include SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions. Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/.

Ones Basketball League Crowns First-Ever Regional Champion at Dub Sports Zone in Houston

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that celebrates the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady – got off to a rousing start with its debut event at The Dub Sports Zone in Richmond, Texas, on Saturday and Sunday. A total of 32 top area and national-level basketball players squared off in spirited action, and it was Texas residents who took the top three places in a weekend filled with exciting and high-quality play across the board.

The OBL Houston Regional champion, and recipient of the $10,000 prize, is John Jordan, 29, of Houston. Jordan, the second seed, defeated runner-up Matt Kiatipis, 21, of Austin (by way of Canada and Simon Fraser University), 9-5, in the finals. Taking third was Myron Taylor, 29, of Killeen. All three now advance to the OBL Finals in Las Vegas this summer (dates and location TBD).

McGrady couldn’t have been happier with the league’s first action.

“The first weekend in Houston was what we expected when we envisioned OBL,” said the seven-time NBA All-Star. “The level and quality of play was outstanding, the facility was first rate, the production was world-class, and we have our first qualifiers for the road to Las Vegas.

“Now it’s on to Atlanta for Week Two,” he added.

John Jordan

“It’s Championship Sunday, this is where champions are made,” said Jordan, who played collegiately at TAMU-Corpus Christi. “I took a tough ‘L’ yesterday and I bounced back, because that’s what champions do.”

Jordan, who arrived back in the U.S. from overseas in Romania just in time to compete in the inaugural OBL event, was also effusive in his praise of the league.

“This is a really big-time league,” he added. “This is the first time they’ve had this league. I know from here on it’s gonna be tougher. Everyone sees (OBL) is real. The money is real. I’m just happy I won the first year.”

Kiatipis, one of the youngest competitors in the field, is also excited about qualifying for the OBL Finals.

“I’m excited to be going to Las Vegas,” said the sixth seed who started slowly but finished strong to earn the spot. “I expected to be going and it’s going to be a big show out there.”

Taylor, the eighth seed, rallied to beat Jamal North in the third-place game.

OBL’s next regional event is this coming week in Atlanta on May 7-8 at CORE4 Atlanta, in Chamblee, Georgia.

The rest of the regional schedule is as follows:

  • Chicago, May 21-22 (Chicago Hope Academy Athletic Center, Chicago, IL)
  • New York City, May 28-29 (Major R. Owens Community Center hosted by New Heights, Brooklyn, NY)
  • The DMV, June 4-5 (The St. James, Springfield, VA)
  • The Bay Area, June 11-12 (The Ultimate Fieldhouse, Walnut Creek, CA)
  • Los Angeles, TBD (TBD)

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will see 21 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

Media partners include SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions.

Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/.

Ones Basketball League Starts to Score with Media Partners

Ones Basketball League (OBL) — the first-ever elite competition that will celebrate the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet and created by Basketball Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady — today announced its initial roster of storytelling and media partners. SLAM Media, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle Productions will all help OBL capture and distribute short-form digital content during this inaugural and proof-of-concept season.

“Our initial focus is on short form digital storytelling to capture the journey of our competitors and we know SLAM, Playmaker, and Heart and Hustle are a winning combination to help us shine a bright light on the essence of basketball and exciting young stars headed our way,” said Lisle Bowen, OBL’s Creative Director. “SLAM is the definitive voice of basketball culture, Playmaker has an elite influencer network that will amplify OBL’s reach, and Heart and Hustle Productions’ extraordinary production team will capture all of the rich stories we find on and off the court.”

The three partners each bring a unique expertise to OBL this season:

SLAM Media will co-produce OBL digital content in and around every event this season, build the OBL storytelling platform week-to-week, and drive engagement with its ardent basketball and pop culture audience of more than 16 million.

Playmaker will amplify OBL’s content and brand. expand the league’s social media presence, and integrate Playmaker social media talent into the OBL experience, and expose OBL to an audience in excess of 12 million at launch.

Heart and Hustle Productions’ world-class production team will capture every moment of the inaugural OBL season, produce compelling stories from on and off the court, and ensure the league is well positioned to engage with its growing audience on the platforms and media that matter most.

“What Tracy has created with the OBL is exactly what basketball needs: innovation, fun, and pure competition,” said Les Green, SLAM CEO. “It’s right in line with what we want to provide to our SLAM audience and coming from T-Mac, a living legend and multiple SLAM Cover athlete, makes the partnership even sweeter.”

“OBL is one of the most exciting leagues to come out in a long time. It’s one of those ideas that’s so obviously great that you have no clue why it hasn’t been done,” said Brandon Harris Founder and CEO Playmaker. “At Playmaker, we are obsessed with creating fast paced, high action short form content. OBL could not be more aligned with our brand and content strategy and we couldn’t be more excited to be on this ride as partners from the very start with Tracy McGrady, as well as Lisle Bowen & the amazing OBL team.”

“T-Mac’s idea to create The Ones Basketball League is a revolutionary idea and one that will bring the culture of basketball full circle,” said Rashad Floyd, Founder and Executive Director, Heart and Hustle Productions. “There’s no question how deeply rooted the 1 v 1 competition is to the hoop game and now with OBL, the world gets to witness these matchups on a professional level.”

Beginning this weekend, seven cities across the United States will host a two-day, regional, 32-player round-robin knockout tournament with athletes aged 18 and up who are currently not under an NBA contract and have not been on an active NBA roster for more than 164 games (equivalent to two NBA regular seasons). The participants will come from a combination of open-sourced video submissions and the advice of basketball insiders. The aim is to welcome both best-in-class talent and players who may still be under the radar of most basketball fans. The inaugural events this year will feature only men, and women will be welcomed as equal participants as soon as 2023.

The regional tournament schedule for the first season of the OBL season is:

Houston, April 30-May 1 (The Dub Sports Zone, Richmond, TX)

Atlanta, May 7-8 (CORE4 Atlanta, Chamblee, GA)

Chicago, May 21-22 (Chicago Hope Academy Athletic Center, Chicago, IL)

New York City, May 28-29 (Major R. Owens Community Center hosted by New Heights, Brooklyn, NY)

The DMV, June 4-5 (The St. James, Springfield, VA)

The Bay Area, June 11-12 (The Ultimate Fieldhouse, Walnut Creek, CA)

Los Angeles, TBD (TBD)

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will see 21 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

Follow Ones Basketball League at https://www.oblhoops.com/.

Ones Basketball Association Unveils Schedule and Venues for First Season of One-on-One Basketball

Seven-time NBA All-Star, Basketball Hall-of-Famer, and entrepreneur Tracy McGrady today unveiled the regional schedule and venues for the launch of the Ones Basketball Association, a first-ever elite competition that will celebrate the most skilled one-on-one players on the planet.

The first year of regional competition will take place in seven cities across the United States, beginning the weekend of April 30th in Houston and concluding in June. The 2022 Finals for the Ones Basketball Association will take place in July.

McGrady has also announced that media and sports industry veteran Jeffrey Pollack has signed on as a strategic advisor to help lead business planning and operations and create best-in-class events and experiences.

“Our goal this year is to test and preview how we should best spotlight and celebrate the competition, raw athletic talent, and extraordinary skills of these young rising stars,” McGrady said. “We are proud to partner with Jeffrey Pollack, who will help us develop our game plan on and off the court. His input is already invaluable to me, as we take our first steps as a startup league and set the foundation for a global basketball property that will create more opportunities for athletes and fans and tell new basketball stories.”

“In many ways this is the first-ever pop-up sports league,” said Pollack. “We are moving fast, tipping off quickly, and excited to publicly share our proof-of-concept with the basketball community and sports industry. Early feedback will be vital to our planning efforts, and we are ready to test, listen, and learn throughout this first season. Players, fans, and partners will have a rare opportunity to co-create the Ones Basketball Association with Tracy and our team, and it’s exciting to help launch a new celebration of basketball excellence.”

Elissa Grabow, McGrady’s long-time business manager, has also joined the leadership team to help turn McGrady’s vision into reality. “Working for Tracy McGrady for the past 25 years has been the ride of a lifetime and this journey is a true labor of love,” said Grabow. “Tracy is inspired and focused and it all comes from the purest place: his heart. It is an honor to be on this team and help develop the Ones Basketball Association into something special that we believe will build community, provide hope and opportunity, and create a new way to fall in love with the game of basketball.”

Beginning in April, seven cities across the United States will host a two-day, regional, 32-player round-robin knockout tournament with athletes aged 18 and up who are currently not under an NBA contract and have not been on an active NBA roster for more than 164 games (equivalent to two NBA regular seasons). The participants will come from a combination of open-sourced video submissions and the advice of basketball insiders. The aim is to welcome both best-in-class talent and players who may still be under the radar of most basketball fans. The inaugural events this year will feature only men, and women will be welcomed as equal participants as soon as 2023.

The regional tournament schedule for the first season of the Ones Basketball Association season is:
· Houston, April 30-May 1 (The Dub Sports Zone, Richmond, TX)
· Atlanta, May 7-8 (CORE4 Atlanta, Chamblee, GA)
· Chicago, May 21-22 (Chicago Hope Academy Athletic Center, Chicago, IL)
· New York City, May 28-29 (Major R. Owens Community Center hosted by New Heights, Brooklyn, NY)
· The DMV, June 4-5 (The St. James, Springfield, VA)
· The Bay Area, June 11-12 (The Ultimate Fieldhouse, Walnut Creek, CA)
· Los Angeles, TBD (TBD)

The winner of each regional tournament will take home a $10,000 cash prize along with an invitation to the Finals, which will see 21 players (the top three from each region) compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grand prize and be crowned “Ruler of the Court.”

Venues this first year will have very limited public seating, in order to keep the current focus on the athletes, their stories, and the competitive format.
Jeffrey Pollack is a sports business executive and Emmy-Award winner with more than 25 years of leadership experience driving catalytic change, growth, and innovation for family-owned, private-equity-backed, and corporate-based ventures. He was most recently President and CEO of the XFL.

Pollack has been lauded for helping businesses and brands rethink, recalibrate, and evolve, and he has held both executive and advisory roles with the NBA, NASCAR, World Series of Poker, Professional Bull Riders, and Los Angeles Chargers. Pollack is founder of The Sports Business Daily, the original daily trade publication for the sports industry.

The field for each regional tournament, along with content and media partners, elite player ambassadors, and details about the 2022 Finals, will be announced in the coming weeks.

Follow Ones Basketball Association at https://www.obahoops.com/.