Mitch Fong’s shots take us inside the Australia’s most iconic basketball festival

The Nike Prahran Summer Jam brings together different cultures and personalities. Skaters, street artists and basketball players share the same urban space in a microcosm where meritocracy and respect are the only two rules.

Born in 2012 from the minds of Eamon Larman-Ripon and Daniel Ella, Prahran’s Summer Jam has quickly established itself as the Mecca of Australian streetball. Supported by Nike and House of Hoops by Foot Locker, the festival has attracted hundreds of players and street artists from around the globe over the years.

The Australian basketball culture is quickly expanding and is gaining more and more credibility thanks to the high attractiveness of its league, the NBL. For example Lamelo Ball, star of the Hornets, and RJ Hampton, a talented guard for the Orlando Magic, preferred to compete against the professionals of the top oceanic league before the NBA Draft.

The national movement churns out top level athletes every year: Andrew Bogut, Joe Ingles and Patty Mills have been true pioneers in bringing the basketball culture of the aussies overseas. Following in their footsteps we can now admire Josh Green, dynamic guard chosen by the Mavericks in 2020 and Joshua Giddey, the new wonder boy of the Oklahoma City Thunder who in his first year destroyed Luka Doncic’s record, becoming the youngest player ever to record a triple double.

More and more players are dreaming of hitting the floors of the biggest arenas in the U.S., and it’s no coincidence that the number of teams participating in a major showcase like the Summer Jam grows each year.

Now in its tenth year, the Nike Prahran Summer Jam has attracted thousands of spectators. Live music, food corners, a spectacular dunk contest and the new event in Perth… The numbers of Australia’s most iconic tournament are destined to grow exponentially for the next editions.

Although the event has a strong basketball focus, Larman-Ripon, in a recent interview for Pick and Roll wanted also to emphasize the importance of the cultural roots regarding his project: “This event is so much more than basketball and it always has been. It’s family, it’s community, it’s music, arts, food…it’s all built on culture”.

That’s why the tenth anniversary seems to be just the starting point for this all-around event.

Mitch Fong
IG @mitchfongphoto

Text by Filippo Vianello