Nike Installed a Basketball Hoop on Mt. Olympus as Tribute to Giannis Antetokounmpo

W+K salutes the first NBA MVP from Greece

All hail, Giannis!

Greek gods belong on Mt. Olympus … even when they play for Milwaukee. So it is with Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo, who recently became the first native of Greece to win the NBA's MVP award, and the first European player with a Nike signature shoe.
  
To pay tribute to the 24-year-old, the sportswear giant and Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam planted a basketball hoop on Mt. Olympus, the ancient home of Zeus, Apollo, Aphrodite and other mythological deities. 

Located at the highest point in Greece, nearly two miles above sea level, the hoop features a backboard inscription that reads, "Fate can start you at the bottom. Dreams can take you to the top." 

W+K says it "wanted kids all around to world to be inspired by the knowledge that no matter where you start, you can reach anywhere you can dream of."

The arid, windswept hillside, pelted by rain and hail, suggests the godlike level of personal sacrifice and struggle required to excel in big-time sports. 

Judging from these behind-the-scenes shots, transporting and planting the hoop turned into an odyssey of Homeric proportions for the agency team:

The hoop was placed on the peak of Skolio, actually the mountain's second highest point but the most accessible for a big crew with camera equipment and a massive basketball hoop.

After the shoot—which took a couple of days owing to intense and rapidly changing weather—the hoop was removed, as the area holds special cultural significance. It's been transported to Sepolia, the Athens neighborhood where Giannis grew up, to inspire local kids to reach for the heights. 

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David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.