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Recap: EBC Celebrity Basketball Challenge at the Barclays Center

Recap: EBC Celebrity Basketball Challenge at the Barclays Center
  • Tour: EBC Celebrity Basketball Challenge
  • Venue: Barclays Center
  • Date: 2014-07-27 16:00:00
  • Twitter: twitter.com/ebcruckerpark

Page 31 was on hand for the 2014 EBC America Celebrity Basketball Challenge at the Barclays Center on Sunday, July 27th, and despite a few technical setbacks, the event was historic. Countless stars came out to experience the EBC at the Rucker basketball league that has reigned as a dominant street ball tournament in NYC for decades. Four celebrity coach teams faced off in a single elimination, one-day tournament and platinum rap stars performed between games and during half time intermissions. Page 31 has created a full day photo timeline below to catch you up to speed with everything that went down.

There were serious delays before the first game of the evening, but Elle Varner’s rendition of the National Anthem was certainly worth the wait. Elle belted out each note as beautifully as she was dressed. After completing her anthem, Elle grabbed a courtside seat to be live and direct for some street ball action.

After a slight change of plans, the first game of the night featured French Montana’s Team NY vs. Kendrick Lamar’s Team LA. After storming out to a big first half lead, Kendrick’s Phil Jackson coaching style fell to fell to French. Still the two showed much love to each other as French moved on in the tournament.

Kendrick’s TDE label mate Ab-Soul came through the game and after his girlfriend, former video vixen Yaris Sanchez joined the L.A bench seemed to lose a bit of focus. It’s fair to assume the team’s mind was elsewhere.

Teyana Taylor, LL Cool J and Maino all scored courtside seats for the action and were each excitedly happy to see their hometown team take the first win of the night. Maino and LL even took photos with near by fans during game breaks.

After the first game, Big Sean came to the court for the first performance of the night. Big Sean didn’t take his set lightly, giving the fans a full show filled with a series of tracks such as Mercy, Beware, Ass, Clique and Don’t Like. By the end of his performance, Sean told the fans how honored he was to be performing here at The Barclays Center, and thanked them for their hospitality.

Between the first and second game, Simone Smalls Pr agency coordinated several press conference beginning with LL Cool J. LL Cool J fielded questions about the history of Rucker Park and explained he wouldn’t be sponsoring a team anytime soon. “Football is more my sport…I might have Kevin Hart at center or something.” Busta Rhymes came by to support the EBC but opted not to take part in the press conferences. LL, Maino and Busta all embraced each other and enjoyed each other’s company during the remainder of the intermission.

Maino and Jadakiss held a joint press conference in which Jada revealed he was on Bobby Schmurda’s Hot Nigga Remix. Maino promoted his latest single featuring Mack Wilds and spoke about the significance of the EBC game being held at The Barclays in his hometown of Brooklyn. They both shared a laugh about playing in a celebrity game and having underwhelming stat lines.

In the second game of the night, Wale’s Team DMV took on what would have been Meek Mill’s Team Philly had he not gotten arrested earlier this month.  Along with assistant coach Stalley of MMG, Wale took his coaching duties seriously commanding the huddles as his squad led by Jarrett Jack took the easy win.



Love and Hip Hop star Naya Lee and model Stephanie Santiago were also in attendance, and would sit alongside Team New York’s bench for the final game of the night. Continuing the trend set by Yaris Sanchez, this only meant bad news for the home team’s fate.



At halftime of the championship game, Brooklyn native Fabolous had the performance of the night. Fab came out in a custom made, snake skin Seattle Supersonics jersey and performed a plethora of his hit records including Throw It In The Bag and Cuffing Season.

Before it was all said and done, Fab would bring out Troy Ave for a performance of My Style and the GS9 boys minus Bobby Schmurda to perform the song of the summer in Hot Nigga. Things went into frenzy as the crowd rushed the court to join in on the performance.

After a long day of performances and star appearances, the championship game concluded. Wale’s Team DMV faced off against French Montana’s Team NY in a close game, but Jarrett Jack and Team DMV proved to be just too much. Wale came out victorious in what was a great day of EBC basketball.

-Recap by Gregory Calvaire
Full Photo Gallery Here