During his 13 years in the NBA, Joakim Noah played for multiple teams including the Chicago Bulls.
Now he is looking to give back to the city that gave so much to him.
Sitting down on FanDuel TV, Noah spoke of the One City Basketball League that he is launching.
The league is an “incentivized basketball program for young men aged 16 to 25 living in the west and south side of Chicago,” and is a collaboration of 28 violence prevention groups in the city.
“One of the things that was really powerful to me was doing these tournaments where we’re bringing kids with different backgrounds playing against each other,” Noah said about the inspiration behind One City.
“One of the ways to unify the city is through hoop,” he added.
Awesome: Former Bulls star Joakim Noah is launching “One City Basketball League” in Chicago this month in collaboration with 28 violence prevention groups. It will provide financial incentives for players, off-court programs and job opportunities. pic.twitter.com/w3XXB0zUpj
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) May 1, 2023
The league sounds very promising and as if it could help many young men in the area.
It will tie them to off-court programs and family services as well.
It will also provide financial incentives for players too.
But Noah also knows that it could create long-lasting connections with other young players in the city.
He said that is exactly what basketball did for him as a young player and he is still very close to the friends he made when he was growing up.
Noah first joined the league in the 2007-08 season.
He became a two-time All-Star while playing for the Bulls and eventually earned a career average of 8.8 points and 9 rebounds.
He was also a three-time All-Defensive Player and the 2013-14 Defensive Player of the Year.
Noah no longer plays in the NBA but that doesn’t mean he has forgotten the power of basketball.NEXT: Paul George Makes A Surprising Claim About Lonzo Ball