An attempt to set the record for the longest basketball game
BUFFALO, NY – On August 6, players from western New York City and Canada hit the Nardin Academy court in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for longest game in basketball. But it’s not just about recognition, because these teams are playing for an important cause.
“Six years ago I started hosting a neighborhood basketball game in my driveway known as the Berryman Drive Fiesta Bowl,” said Nick Revelas. “It was a fun way for our neighbors to get together down the aisle. And then over the years it kind of became this huge fundraiser, not just to raise money for mental health, but also to raise awareness.
Revelas and a few friends started fundraising after losing a close friend, Devin Waring, to suicide. After some changes due to the pandemic, the annual tournament is back, and bigger than ever. The players come from high schools and colleges in western New York, and even north of the border with Canada.
“We’ve always had some sort of background in basketball, running three-on-three basketball tournaments and obviously the little play in the aisle,” Revelas said. “And so given, obviously, the COVID-19 pandemic, we couldn’t host a big tournament with hundreds of people. So we wanted to come up with something creative. And then the idea came; What better way to break the stigma surrounding mental health than by breaking a world record? ”
By the way, that record is 120 hours, one minute and seven seconds, which means Revelas and the other players will play until Wednesday night to reach their goal. Until then, Nardin is their temporary home, with food and refreshments provided by volunteers, spaces for sleeping, and baths of ice and Epsom salt for pain relief.
“Physically we’re all a little banged up,” Revelas said. “But we are doing fine and mentally everyone is in a good mood and positive which is great.”
Cameras and witnesses are constantly watching to make sure teams are spending their time on the pitch to keep the back-to-back game going as planned. With the countdown, players and the community at large are expecting a big celebration.
“If we do end up breaking the record, we’ll have over 1,000 balls on the gym ceiling,” Revelas said. “These will all fall, the Guinness Official Judge will be there to verify it. And they will actually give us our official certificate congratulating us on this effort.
However, teams cannot achieve the goal on their own. In addition to donations, which have already totaled over $ 50,000 this year, filling the stands to cheer on these resilient players will make the record much more meaningful.
“We would love if someone wants to come and support us,” Revelas said. “Nardin is open 24 hours a day, 24 hours a day, we play, we would love the community support and yes, so far it has been fun.”
To learn more about the game and to donate, visit FB21.org.