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The St. James Announces Kevin Durant MLK Classic, an Elite High School Basketball Showcase Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

MLK Description


Inaugural Kevin Durant MLK Classic powered by The St. James to Feature Competition, Leadership and Community Service for some of the Best Basketball Programs in North America

SPRINGFIELD, Va.Nov. 22, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — The St. James, the premier sports, wellness and entertainment destination in the country, today announced its partnership with two-time NBA Champion Kevin Durant’s Team Durant at The St. James, to produce the inaugural Kevin Durant MLK Classic.

BROOKLYN, NY – OCTOBER 5: Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets is seen during Practice in the Park on October 5, 2019 at Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 2 Brooklyn, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

The KD MLK Classic, which will take place at The St. James from January 18 through January 20, 2020, will showcase match ups between some of North America’s elite high school basketball programs and players to provide these young student athletes with unique leadership, service and educational experiences in celebration of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Rising stars from the US and Canada will come together at The St. James to compete in “must see” games, tour some of Washington, DC’s most significant and treasured memorials and museums and participate in leadership and service experiences all to deepen their understanding of Dr. King’s mission to expand freedom and equality and uplift human dignity.

“Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s commitment to inclusivity and social activism are values I’ve always tried to instill in my players,” said Wayne Pratt, Durant’s father and chairman of basketball at The St. James. “The Kevin Durant MLK Classic continues Dr. King’s legacy by bringing together young people to develop leadership skills on and off the court.”

Participating teams will visit the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, the National Museum of African American History & Culture and the Lincoln Memorial, the site of Dr. King’s iconic “I Have a Dream” speech. They will also engage in a conversation on leadership and participate in a community impact project.

“We, as a nation, owe Dr. King an enormous debt of gratitude,” said Kendrick Ashton, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of The St. James. “We repay that debt by ensuring that the next generation understands the enormous struggle for freedom, justice and equality Dr. King led and encourage them to find ways to continue Dr. King’s work. The Kevin Durant MLK Classic is a wonderful vehicle to do so.”

“It is with tremendous humility and reverence that we launch the KD MLK Classic powered by The St. James,” said Craig Dixon, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of The St. James. “We’re incredibly excited to be paying homage to Dr. King by helping young people pursue their dream of competing at the highest level and providing them with truly unique educational and leadership experiences that we hope will enhance their understanding of the importance of values driven leadership and strengthen their belief in their ability to achieve their dreams.”

The KD MLK Classic powered by The St. James will feature some of the top high school players in the US and Canada, including:

  • Elijah Fisher, Crestwood Prep, Toronto, Ontario
  • J.T. Thor, Norcross High SchoolNorcross, Georgia
  • Mady Sissoko, Wasatch Academy, Mount Pleasant Utah
  • Samson Ruzhentsev, Hamilton Heights Christian Academy, Chattanooga, Tennessee
  • Deivon Smith, Grayson High SchoolLoganville, Georgia

And the Washington, DC region’s own:

  • Cory Barnes Jr., Archbishop Carroll, Washington, D.C.
  • Tegra Izay, Archbishop Carroll, Washington, D.C.
  • Erik ReynoldsBullis SchoolPotomac, Maryland
  • Rodney Rice Jr.Bullis SchoolPotomac, Maryland
  • Zaakir Williamson, Rock Creek Christian Academy, Upper Marlboro, Maryland
  • Delonnie Hunt, Rock Creek Christian Academy, Upper Marlboro, Maryland
  • Darren BuchananWilson High SchoolWashington, D.C.

Teams from the following schools will be playing in the showcase: Norcross High School (Norcross, GA), Crestwood Prep (Toronto, Ontario), Hamilton Heights (Chattanooga, TN), Archbishop Carroll (Washington, DC), Bullis School (Potomac, MD), Rock Creek Christian (Upper Marlboro, MD), Grayson High School (Loganville, GA), Wasatch Academy, (Mount Pleasant, Utah).

This is the first high school basketball showcase produced by a leading NBA star and is the latest in a series of partnerships and events for The St. James that have quickly established it as one of the leading brands nationally in sports and wellness.

Visit www.kdmlkclassic.com for tickets and information.

About The St. James
The St. James is the premier sports, wellness and entertainment destination in the country. Our mission is to maximize human potential by designing, developing and operating sports, wellness, entertainment and hospitality programs, services and experiences that engage, inspire and empower people to pursue their passions and be their best at play, at work and in life. The St. James aims to serve as the center of the universe in every community where it is located by delivering the most comprehensive combination of best-in-class sports and wellness venues, developmental and elite coaching, training and competition, five-star lifestyle experiences and family centered active fun all in an environment that engages, inspires and delights everyone that comes through our doors. The St. James, which opened its first location just outside of Washington, DC in the fall of 2018, plans to open its second complex in the Chicago suburb of Lincolnshire in the fall of 2021. For more information, please visit thestjames.com.

SOURCE The St. James

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