Several Marquee Current and Former NBA & WNBA Stars Join 32 Youth Teams at Inaugural Jr. NBA World Championship at Walt Disney World Resort

Filed in: Jr. NBA World Championships, Youth Sports

First-of-its-kind global youth competition will feature more than 300 boys and girls from 35 different countries

Three-time NBA champion Dwyane Wade, 2018 Hall of Fame inductee Grant Hill, eight-time NBA All-Star and Atlanta Hawks guard Vince Carter, two-time NBA All-Star and Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond and Milwaukee Bucks center Brook Lopez will join 317 boys and girls from 35 countries at the first Jr. NBA World Championship taking place at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

WNBA legends Tamika Catchings, Swin Cash and Jennifer Azzi will also participate in the six-day event that will take place at Walt Disney World Resort Aug. 7-12.

In addition to competing in the tournament, the youth athletes will participate in an opening ceremony and celebratory parade at Magic Kingdom Park with Azzi, Drummond and WNBA President Lisa Borders Aug. 5.

The event brings together the top 32 boys and girls U14 teams (16 from the United States and 16 international) that advanced from regional competitions earlier this year.  The tournament will feature two divisions, separated into U.S. and international brackets that include round-robin and single elimination competition.  Winners of the U.S. and international brackets will play in the World Championship games Aug. 12.

There are eight teams from the U.S. Boys division and eight from the U.S. Girls division.

U.S. Boys Division

Central – Lenexa, Kan.

Mid-Atlantic – Upper Marlboro, Md.

Midwest – Detroit, Mich.

Northeast – Westchester, N.Y.

Northwest – Seattle, Wash.

South – Dallas, Texas

Southeast – Atlanta, Ga.

West – Los Angeles, Calif.

U.S. Girls Division

Central – Kansas City, Mo.

Mid-Atlantic – Germantown, Md.

Midwest – South Bend, Ind.

Northeast – Westchester, N.Y.

Northwest – New Castle, Wash.

South – Dallas, Texas

Southeast – Columbia, S.C.

West – Los Angeles, Calif.

*Teams are based in the cities listed, but comprised of youth from throughout the respective regions

The 16 international teams represent Africa & Middle East, Asia Pacific, Canada, China, Europe, India, Mexico and South America.

The Jr. NBA World Championship is one of several high-profile basketball events that take place at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex throughout the year.

From March through the end of July, the sports complex hosts the AAU Basketball National Championships (boys and girls), a program that has been the starting point for NBA stars such as Wade, Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving, and WNBA stars Elena Della Donne (Washington Mystics), Skylar Diggins (Dallas Wings) and Candace Parker (Los Angeles Sparks).  Hundreds of teams featuring many of the nation’s highest-ranked players compete for national titles and showcase their skills in front of top college basketball coaches and recruiters in late July at the sports complex each summer.

For sports fans who love the college game, Disney also hosts the AdvoCare Invitational Tournament in the fall. Several basketball experts, including ESPN basketball analyst Jay Bilas, consider the AdvoCare Invitational one of the best early-season tournaments in the country. Played at the sports complex over Thanksgiving weekend (Nov. 22-23 & 25), the AdvoCare Invitational field is led by Villanova, winners of two of the past three NCAA men’s national championships. Other teams in the field include Florida State, the College of Charleston, LSU, Memphis, Oklahoma State, Alabama-Birmingham and Canisius College.