|Kevin Durant Sponsors Grassroots Basketball Program
With sponsorship from one of the NBA’s most elite players in Kevin Durant, starting from scratch was not an option. Therefore, the fledging program has already attracted interest from several elite middle school programs such as the former 2020 Slam City Elite, 2019 DC Premier, 2021 Team Glory Elite and the 2021 Annandale Bulldogs. In fact, each of these programs is rumored to be joining TD for the upcoming season as head coaches have already begun contacting their former program directors to inform them of their departures. It’s not just middle school aged programs as TD will be fielding teams in grades 2nd through 8th, with 8 total teams expected to hit the floor this year.
As most basketball fans know, the above middle school programs have stocked piled the type of individual talent not often seen in the area or nationally. Although the DMV is as talent rich as any area in the country, and annually pumps out anywhere from 60-75 D-I players per year, one has to wonder if there will be enough elite level talent to go around for all of the heavyweight programs in the area to remain viable. TD’s emergence in the area could mean the demise of some much storied programs. Only time will tell how the area will be impacted, but we won’t have to wait long to find out as each of the teams mentioned above will be participating in the National Youth Basketball League (NYBL) when the season tips off in DC in mid-March.
Although many may see TD’s arrival on the scene as a potential escalation of the local sneaker wars, Kevin Durant’s involvement in grassroots basketball should result in more opportunities for area youth. A source close to the negotiations, which begin with initial discussions about 3-4 months ago, is impressed with KD’s commitment to giving back to the community where he grew up. “KD and his people want to be an example of what’s right about youth basketball,” said a member of KD’s team. “KD wants to provide role models, tutoring and other educational programs to the youth in the area. He [KD] wants to bring a clean program to the area that’s run the right way,” continued the source. Needless to say, things will be on and popping in the DMV for years to come, and only time will tell to what extent Team Durant makes an impact on the local and national landscape of middle school basketball. Welcome to grassroots basketball KD!