The fallout has begun from the just concluded basketball camp featuring the World Champion Miami Heat’s starting point guard Mario Chalmers. Speaking on Radio Caribbean International’s Morning Rumble, Public Relations Officer of the St Lucia Basketball Federation, Neil Joseph opined that the event was poorly organized resulting in a low turnout.
However, event organizer, Rhythm FM’s Dwayne Mendes is refuting those claims, explaining that over two hundred kids were in attendance which by ratio of our population and the interest in the sports made the camp a success. He also pointed out the boost in popularity the island experienced through the basketball star’s social media activity.
“There was no doubt that Mario enjoyed his stay in Saint Lucia with his continuous Instagram posts like “Well Saint Lucia thank you for the amazing weekend. I had a blast” and “We out here in these St Lucia Streets Friday night Street Party.” Those were just a few of the many social media posts by the superstar to his 300k plus Instagram followers and 600k plus twitter followers, which is eventually viewed by millions. One of his Instagram posts was able to generate 69, 000 likes in 10 minutes. These posts were followed with replies and likes from hundreds of thousands fans from the US as well as other Caribbean islands, in some cases asking Mario’s advice on where to stay in Saint Lucia and even a few jealous reply’s asking him to come to other islands instead.”
Reference was also made to Chalmers’ accessibility throughout his stay.
“If you happened to visit Rodney Bay this past weekend you would have caught a glimpse of Mario and friends walking the streets; dining at the various restaurants, grabbing a bite from the street vendors, hanging out with locals, taking pictures with fans, shopping in the grocery store and even walking back to his hotel with bags of groceries. His easy going and humble personality almost made you forget how relevant he is in the sporting world and the wealth he has accumulated because of his skills. Mario was also able to sample our beautiful beaches right outside the Bay Gardens Beach Resort and Spa. He even tweeted a thank you to the management and staff and said he’ll be back and asked his followers to retweet.”
According to Mendes, “The basketball camp was captured on video and highlights of the occasion will be seen on NBA Cares and Miami Heat TV which is expected to reach over 20 million people.”