LOS ANGELES and CHICAGO, Aug. 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ —
The Underrated Tour Powered by Rakuten’s third and fourth stop of the tour took place over these past two weekends and brought together talent from the region. Over 300 high school athletes were selected to play and showcase their talent on the court, ultimately vying for 16 spots from each city, split evenly among boys and girls, to represent the North and West region in the Tour Championship taking place this April in the Bay Area. Participants were awarded the opportunity to train with Stephen Curry’s personal on-court trainer, Brandon Payne, and local Chicago and Los Angeles coaches. Stephen Curry has announced the North and West finalists across his social channels (@StephenCurry30) Stay tuned for more information regarding the Underrated Tour Championship. *All COVID protocols were adhered to for the safety of participants and staff.
Over 300 boys and girls selected to participate, high school grades 9-12;
Chicago, IL August 13-14, 2021 / Los Angeles, CA August 21-22, 2021
Hope Academy / Aim Sports Group
Credit: Jon Lopez / Jon Lopez Creative
“Play with confidence. Move with confidence. Play together. Make the right basketball play. That’s what we want. You can’t do that if you’re nervous. Don’t be nervous. Play. You are here because we believe in you.”
Brandon Payne, NBA Skills and Performance Trainer (Stephen Curry’s Personal On-Court Trainer)
“Getting to play in front of Stephen Curry’s trainer, Brandon Payne, it’s a lot of fun obviously, but it’s a great opportunity for kids who aren’t as highly recruited to get their name out there and compete. I’m just grateful for the opportunity”
Henry Vetter, Canterbury School, Chicago Tour Stop
“This gave me another opportunity to put my name out there and to showcase what I can do. It gave me a chance to further separate myself and all my hard work paid off. Like the name of the tour, I am underrated, so it pushes me to work and helps me learn other key skills to become better.”
Nyla Walker, Example Academy, Chicago Tour Stop
“In 2019, I made the team to go to the Championship of the tour, but unfortunately COVID took that away from us. So, I came back a whole different athlete, a different mindset, and I just put it all on the court to make it back to the Championship.”
Faith Okorie, Example Academy, Chicago Tour Stop
“I live in a small city in Canada(Winnipeg)and wanted to see if I could complete in the US and that’s why I signed up for the Underrated Tour. I showed out my game and got far into Day 2 and I’m proud of that. It was our first time in California ever and our only goal was to stay focused on this experience and play basketball, not vacation.”
Lorence De La Cruz, St. Paul High School, Los Angeles Tour Stop
“I wanted to attend to get recognized. Where I’m from, we don’t get the exposure and we don’t have a league to play in, so I wanted to come here and show what I got. Getting chosen to attend this tour was mini validation in a way and it feels really good to get some type of recognition. I got to meet so many girls, everyone is so good here and it’s fun to compete with so many talented athletes.”
Maria Gorbushin, Rancho Bernardo High School, Los Angeles Tour Stop
About The Underrated Tour Powered by Rakuten
The Underrated Tour Powered by Rakuten is back for a third year, this time across U.S. cardinal points: Kicking off with Washington, D.C. in the East (July 31st – August 1st), Dallas in the South (August 7th-8th), Chicago out North (August 13th-14th), Los Angeles out West (August 21st-22nd), with a championship close-out in the Bay Area in 2022.
Year 3 of the Underrated Tour Powered by Rakuten returns Stateside, bigger and better, after its international launch in 2019. All tour stops are co-gender and free, and the top eight girls and boys from each region (64 finalists plus a parent/ guardian), will be flown to the Bay Area Championship, courtesy of United Airlines. The 64 finalists will compete for two coveted spots in Curry’s Under Armour Select Camp. Other offerings include the same specialized training from Stephen’s on-court trainer, Brandon Payne, providing America’s most promising athletes with best-in-class resources (drills, off-court education, personal skills development, expert panels, etc.), knowledge and exposure.
Rakuten, Inc. (TSE: 4755) is a global leader in internet services that empower individuals, communities, businesses and society. Founded in Tokyo in 1997 as an online marketplace, Rakuten has expanded to offer services in e-commerce, fintech, digital content and communications to approximately 1.3 billion members around the world. The Rakuten Group has over 19,000 employees, and operations in 30 countries and regions. For more information visit https://global.rakuten.com/corp/.
MYLINH CHAU/ [email protected]
ASHLEY OROZCO / [email protected]
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