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The World's Longest Basketball Game scores big for mental health groups

The event has helped raise tens of thousands of dollars for mental health organizations in Western New York.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — 2 On Your Side talked Friday night with Nick Revelas, who sprung into action after a close friend died by suicide several years ago.

Since then he has helped raise tens of thousands of dollars for mental health organizations in Western New York with The World's Longest Basketball Game.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and 2 On Your Side has been discussing it a lot in recent days.

2 ON YOUR SIDE: What was it that got you interested in this in the first place?

NICK: Yeah, so we started this event a few years ago, just as a small three-on-three neighborhood tournament to try to have some fun and raise money for some good causes. In December 2017, I lost a close friend, Devin Waring, to suicide, and so we were lucky enough to have this platform to raise money and awareness for mental health. Since his passing, we've raised over $75,000 for charities across Buffalo.

2 ON YOUR SIDE: Tell us about this event, and how much you expect you're going to be able to raise?

NICK: Yeah, so this year, we're attempting to break the world record for the longest basketball game. It's going to be taking place August 6 through the 11th, and it's going to be held at Nardin Academy's brand new athletic facility. I mean, there's a lot of popularity and hype that comes with breaking world record, and I easily think that we should be able to pass that $50,000 number that's currently our goal.

2 ON YOUR SIDE: And we would be remiss if I didn't ask you about your friend, Devin. Tell us a little bit about Devin.

NICK: Yeah, I mean, Devin was a great kid, he had the world in front of him. He really had shown no signs, or any struggle of mental health, so it really shocked our entire community when that happened to December 2017. And I was fortunate to have a great group of friends and family around me to help me get through that time. And luckily, we've been able to turn his passing into something to try to inspire change for so many others that are struggling currently right now.

2 ON YOUR SIDE: How many people do you expect to turnout for this? And if people do want to volunteer for this, what should they do?

NICK: Anyone that wants to get involved, you can go to https://www.fb21.org/. If you want to sign up and play, if you want to find out more about our cause, or donate to this, obviously this very important issue. That's where you can go.

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