More than 130 young people flocked to Bedford Union Armory on Monday to get tips and tricks from Nets star James Harden.

The clinic was held in celebration of a new multiyear partnership between the Brooklyn Nets and Adidas that is centered around connecting with young people through basketball. The newly-named Brooklyn Nets Basketball Academy presented by Adidas aims to grow the game on a grassroots level throughout Brooklyn and beyond.

James Harden at a Nets youth clinic. Photo: Maggie Zerbe.

“This is something I’ve been missing in this last year and a half since the pandemic. Just to be in front of these kids means a lot to me,” Harden said.

James Harden at a Nets youth clinic. Photo: Maggie Zerbe.

“I was in their position, just a kid trying to figure out life and basketball helped me do that. Hopefully I can inspire them to be great.”

The youth academy was founded in 2016 and has since welcomed more than 30,000 kids to over 450 events while working with more than of 225 community partners, ultimately reaching 60,000 people, the Nets said.

As part of the partnership, Adidas will become the preferred merchandise and equipment provider for all of the academy’s programs and select James Harden adidas apparel will also be available for Nets fans to purchase in the team store.

James Harden at a Nets youth clinic. Photo: Maggie Zerbe.

John Abbamondi, CEO of Nets and Barclays Center parent company BSE Global, said the companies were “thrilled to advance our shared commitment to growing grassroots basketball through the Brooklyn Nets Basketball Academy.”

 “The Academy teaches children many important life lessons and yesterday’s clinic with James Harden was the beginning of our work with adidas to extend our community impact.”  

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