Russell Westbrook’s 2018 Why Not? Asia Tour
Follow Russ as he connects with fans in Shanghai, Beijing and Tokyo this summer.
For a third year, Jordan Brand family member Russell Westbrook is on a whirlwind trip of Asia to spread his love of the game and “Why Not?” philosophy. “If I have a challenge, I run at it, not away from it,” Russ has said of this fearless mentality, which motivates him to pursue his passions on and off the court.
“For me, the most important part of this tour is getting to the fans, the kids and the people,” Russ said on the first day of tour. In Shanghai, Russ is exploring the city, meeting fans and attending the King of Underdogs tournament and Why Not? Apprentice Challenge. In Beijing, he’s spending time with local fans and artists, awarding Wings students and judging the NBA5v5 Dunk Contest. In Tokyo, he’s connecting with local fans at signature stores, meeting various fashion designers and playing ball with local youth.
Check back for Russ’s tour updates during the next few days.
Day 1: Why Not? Salon and King of Underdogs
2:00 p.m.: After arriving in Shanghai earlier in the day, Russ heads to the gym for his first workout of the tour.
4:00 p.m.: Russ jumps in the car for a 40-minute ride to the new Jordan 77 Songhu store for the Why Not? Salon.
4:40 p.m.: Upon arrival, Russ is welcomed by a sea of fans, local art students and art pieces inspired by his “Why Not?” philosophy.
5:00 p.m.: Russ joins five fan club members in a Russ-inspired trivia contest. He talks about his new Jordan Why Not Zer0.1 Low and explains that the shoe was inspired by the court he played on as a child.
5:10 p.m.: Russ flexes his creativity at the T-shirt customization area, where fans got to fill in a blank. He chose the words “equality” and “youth.”
6:00 p.m.: Russ arrives at the Huangpu Sports Park for the livestreamed King of Underdogs tournament — the most popular, grassroots one-on-one basketball show. The winner takes home a pair of signed black Jordan Why Not Zer0.1 Lows.
Day 2: Why Not? City Tour and Apprentice Challenge
10:00 a.m.: Russ works out at the Yingmi Basketball Court.
3:00 p.m.: Various media interview Russ at a hotel with a sweeping view of Shanghai.
4:35 p.m.: Wearing an all-white ‘fit and a floral Why Not? T-shirt, Russ takes a Why Not? City Tour to check out the freshest Chinese fashion retailers, including Eth0s and designer Feng Chen Wang.
6:00 p.m.: Russ heads to the Rosso School of Art and Design, where he meets student designers.
7:15 p.m.: Russ travels to the Why Not? Apprentice Challenge to play with students at Wuai High School. Russ selects four out of 12 graduates, who competed in multiple challenges for a chance to go to the Beijing Championships.
Day 3: Why Not? Art Exhibition and Wings Visit
1:35 p.m.: Russ arrives in Beijing after a two-hour flight.
3:00 p.m.: Russ hits the gym and does some shooting drills before getting started for the day.
7:00 p.m.: Russ heads to the Why Not? Art Exhibition near the new Jordan 9 Guanghua Store, where crowds outside cheer “OKC!” and “MVP!” He meets four local artists, who each created sculptures inspired by Russell and his “Why Not?” mentality.
7:15 p.m.: Russ meets with members of the Lace Up sneaker app, who created a film and art pieces inspired by Russ and his childhood best friend.
7:30 p.m.: Russ meets with Wings students, awards them with their high school graduation plaques, helps officially announce Wings 2.0 in China and plays a game with the kids.
Day 4: NBA China 5V5 Tournament Dunk Contest and Dongdan Sunday Sunset Attack
10:00 a.m.: Russ does a morning workout before the day begins.
3:50 p.m.: Russ arrives at the Dongdan soccer field to judge the NBA China 5v5 tournament dunk contest. Russ’s advice to the dunkers? “Be creative and show me something I have never seen before,” he says. The champion earns a 10 for a baseline, back-handed slam over other participants.
4:35 p.m.: Russ heads to a nearby streetball court, the iconic Dongdan Court, for a weekly “Sunday Sunset” attack. He meets the founder of the event, known as the “Beijing Russell Westbrook,” and participates in a friendly game of knockout with the local players.
5:00 p.m.: Russ coaches “Team Russ” against streetballers from around the city. The crowd cheers “MVP RUSS!” and he completes the MVP tradition of signing a sticker and putting it on the basket backboard.
5:20 p.m.: At a nearby hotel, Russ takes questions from local and international media.
Day 5: Unbanned Screening
9:05 a.m.: Russ takes a three-hour flight to his third and final stop of the tour, Tokyo.
6:00 p.m.: Russ heads to Toho Cinema for a special screening of Unbanned: The Legend of AJ1.
6:10 p.m.: Russ enters the theater dancing to the opening music of the Unbanned film. The host, Chris, asks him about his style, his first pair of Jordans and why he’s excited to be in Japan.
6:30 p.m.: Russ does some quick shopping before heading back to the hotel for a workout.
7:30 p.m.: Russ goes out for a traditional Japanese meal.
Day 6: Gallery 2, Nike Harajuku, Tokyo City Fashion Tour and Allday Street Tournament
9:00 a.m.: Despite being the longest and most packed day of the tour, Russ sneaks in a morning workout.
10:30 a.m.: Sporting blue sunglasses, Russ checks out Gallery 2, a basketball-focused shop in Shibuya, and meets with a group known as the Authentic Ballers. There, he watches as kids compete to show off their most explosive verticals.
11:00 a.m.: Russ goes to Nike Harajuku to interact with the crowd and do a live interview. Russ talks to several superfans, including one who does animations of OKC players and another who flew to the United States to see 30 games in-person last year.
11:40 a.m.: Russ begins his fashion tour of Tokyo and is joined by his mother. He visits shops such as Sacai, GR8, Facetasm and United Arrows and Sons. He meets with fashion designers, including Sacai’s Chitose Abe.
12:40 p.m.: Designers from Facetasm present Russ with custom Why Not? apparel pieces, and he does some quick shopping, too.
1:30 p.m.: Russ has lunch.
3:30 p.m.: Russ participates in interviews with top Tokyo basketball, fashion and lifestyle media at a local boutique hotel.
5:00 p.m.: After a quick wardrobe change into a Why Not? Tour T-shirt, Jordan DryFit 23 Alpha shorts and a pair of his signature sneakers, Russ does his final appearance of the day at YoYogi Park. He coaches kids in the Why Not? clinic, where he has a blast interacting with young basketball talent. He then participates in a knockout tournament, the Allday Street Tournament, and a 5-on-5 exhibition pickup game. He ends the day by taking selfies with fans outside.
Day 7: Sensō-ji Temple
10:00 a.m.: Russ arrives at the gates of Sensō-ji Temple, the city’s oldest and most popular temple. The name of the gate, Kaminarimon, translates to “Thunder Gate” in Japanese. The word is written on the temple’s central lantern, as well.
10:15 a.m.: Wearing a new version of his floral Why Not? apparel collection, Russ takes photos in front of the “Thunder Gate” and speaks with local media about his time in Tokyo and his interest in Japanese culture.
10:25 a.m.: Russ does some shopping nearby for his son, Noah.
1:00 p.m.: Russ says goodbye to Asia and heads to the airport after another successful tour.