J. Cole’s hoop dreams aren’t over yet.
While the rapper may not take the court again –after his stint in the Basketball Africa League earlier this year– he’s making sure he’s staying involved in the sport. Cole’s Dreamville record label is collaborating with Wilson to bring back the Chicago pro-am basketball tournament and rename it The Dreamville Chi-League Powered by Wilson.
Chicago has always shown the Dreamville squad love, which spurred the label to bring back the tourney after a four-year hiatus. Chicago native and Dreamville rapper Omen voiced over a video reintroducing the league with clips of Derrick Rose and Candace Parker putting on for the city as well as spliced in images of fans lined up for blocks to gain entry to Cole’s Dollar and a Dream tour from 2015.
“Chicago has supported Dreamville and its artists from the beginning. It’s a privilege to infuse our brand with the rich legacy of the Chi-League, while also helping to celebrate the unique culture of the city of Chicago,” said Dreamville Executive Vice President Candace Rodney in a press release. “The revamped Dreamville Chi-League will help bring back a competition ingrained in community and to make this all happen, there’s no better partner than a hometown hero like Wilson.”
To further keep things in the community, all the games will be hosted at Chicago State University; Wilson and Dreamville will host basketball clinics each Saturday for the kids while local Black-owned businesses will be tapped to run concession and food stands.
There will be eight 10-player men’s teams ready to compete in the single-game elimination rounds, and the ladies will follow the same format but with four teams.
Ticket details are said to become available closer to the August 8 tip-off, which will sell out quickly since entertainment will also include concerts to keep things true to Dreamville’s roots.