Posted on 28 Sep By Visionarism
Last weekend, Visionarism attended the first edition of the NBA Hoops Factory Tournament in Paris. 200 basketball teams aged between 14 and 24 have been competing against each other since August for a chance to get down to the last 30. The last 30 teams got the opportunity to play in the final stage of the tournament at Hoops Factory, where each team got drafted for one of the 30 NBA franchises.
The NBA wanted to create something positive in Europe for the young players and give the winning team the opportunity to go to the Global Games in January 2017, taking place in London. Additionally, other brands were sponsoring the tournament: Stance with the Stance Skills Challenge, 2K with the 3-points challenge, and Mitchell & Ness with the Slam Dunk Contest and After-party where goodie bags, food and drinks were available to all VIP guests.
All those activities around the tournament made it a real show for all basketball lovers who attended. But the event wouldn’t have been complete without the appearance of an NBA legend.
For the first edition of the tournament, the National Basketball Association brought out the 7 times NBA champion: Robert Horry. Also known as “Big Shot Rob”, the NBA legend greeted all the players and watched all the talents play until the final, won by the Chicago Bulls.
Visionarism’s Managing Director T.McFly had the opportunity to be part of the judges alongside Robert Horry during the Mitchell & Ness Slam Dunk Contest, and managed to sit down with him for a quick interview. Scroll down to check out the photo recap of the event, and to read the interview with Robert Horry.
Interview with Robert Horry:
We are in Paris at Hoops Factory, where many young players are competing against each other. I wanted to know your thoughts on the basketball level in France and in Europe in general.
The Europe players are making the American player step up their game. Their game is fantastic and once American players notice it, they have to find a way to do better. There are so many great players that represent European basketball such as Tony Parker.
You’ve won 7 championships with 3 different teams, which is truly spectacular. If you could only name one, what is the most memorable moment in your career?
If I had to name one… that’s a tough one. I think you have to look at what you’ve accomplished. I look at what I did and I spent my first four seasons being a Rocket and we won 2 NBA championships. But then to be honest, every game was amazing. I played teams with 60+ winners, such as Utah Jazz, Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic… It was an amazing run.
You played 16 seasons in the NBA. Now looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?
It’s a very interesting one. Like I said, it was an amazing run and I loved every single moment of my career. I just think I would have voiced my opinion a little bit more. I was always accepting what was handed to me because we were winning. That’s the only thing I can think of.
You’ve earned yourself the nickname “Big Shot Rob” for your clutch shooting in important games. For all our young readers who play basketball, can you describe what goes through your mind before making an important shot?
Nothing! (laughs) This is the thing. When you see guys who are so intense about making shots and so worried about this and that. For me, I just want to play. What will be will be. You know, when you’ve been playing basketball for so long, you’ve spent countless hours at the gym. You should know what you’re doing. Just do it, don’t think about it. Every time you shoot, you should just think “money”. Many players out there are lacking of confidence. Once you get that confidence, it turns into cockiness, and you need that cockiness. Every basketball player needs it.
Special thanks to the NBA (@nba), Mitchell & Ness (@mitchellandnesseurope), Hoops Factory (@hoop_factory, www.hoopsfactory.com), and Robert Horry.
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All images by Yassine Hajji (@laguezz), for Visionarism.