During the month leading up to the 2023 season finals, the VBA initiated the Story of the Year Contest. This contest created a platform for fans to share their personal narratives about their connection to the sport and the cherished moments they have experienced.

One of the participants in the contest was Rocky, an eight-year-old who shared a heartwarming story about his first season as a VBA spectator in 2022. Rocky was captivated by the electric atmosphere of live basketball games. The most touching part of Rocky’s story was when he expressed his gratitude towards the VBA players who allowed him to step onto the court on his eighth birthday. This experience left a lasting impression on him and he will always treasure it.

Rocky poses with Saigon Heat star Kentrell Barkley. Photo: VBA

Despite his young age, Rocky is dedicated to basketball and dreams of one day playing for the Saigon Heat.

In addition to Rocky’s story, Tracy, a teacher and basketball enthusiast, also shared her love for the sport. Tracy’s love affair with basketball began eight years ago when she started following the Saigon Heat in the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL). She was surprised to discover that some of her students were also fans of the team and enjoyed playing basketball.

Vietnamese star Arnold is among Tracy’s favorite players. Photo: VBA

Over the years, Tracy has witnessed her students excel in basketball. They have won the Vietnam Students Basketball League and came close to securing a national U16 championship.

Another participant, Duy Bom, shared a heartfelt story about the bond that basketball has created between him and his son. Duy Bom, who is turning 40 this year, has never been as passionate about any sport as he is about basketball. In the past, he found immense joy in football, but his love for basketball has been a unique experience, especially because he shares this passion with his child.

A father and son in the audience at a VBA 2023 game. Photo: VBA

His son is a devoted fan of the Hanoi Buffaloes, and Duy Bom is grateful to basketball for providing them with such an exciting season.

These anecdotes are just a glimpse of the extraordinary stories submitted by fans for the contest. The top three stories, determined by the highest number of votes on the official VBA Facebook page, will be acknowledged and rewarded by the VBA.