Skateboarding in its purest form has always been about who can make the most of a skateboard and a flat stretch of pavement. That's the concept behind Game of Skate, a new "World of X Games" event and show being filmed at ESPN headquarters in Bristol, Connecticut, Aug. 1.
Eight skaters will face off in the head-to-head, trick-for-trick showdown, playing by the same basic rules as the classic basketball game H.O.R.S.E. The first skater completes a trick, and the remaining skaters must successfully complete the same trick. If they don't land the trick, they receive a letter. Once a skater has spelled out S.K.A.T.E., that skater is eliminated. The last skater standing wins the game.
"I love that the Game of Skate is the same contest kids have every day at their local spots," said three-time X Games Skateboard Street gold medalist Chris Cole, who will be among the competitors. "They skate together and play in a friendly competition. We are gonna do the same."
All eyes will be on reigning X Games Skateboard Street gold medalist Nyjah Huston, fresh off collecting his ninth X Games medal in X Games Austin and winning the 2014 Street League Skateboarding opener in Chicago last month. Cole is the more experienced Game of Skate competitor, however, with credentials including a win at Battle At The Berrics, the most popular event using the Game-of-S.K.A.T.E format.
"I'm really looking forward to participating in this Game of Skate," Cole said. "It's great to see X Games creating more skate events, especially different types, since skateboarding is so diverse. This being on the Bristol campus is just icing on the cake."
Mike Mo Capaldi and PJ Ladd, also previous Battle At The Berrics winners, will be in the mix in Bristol, as will X Games Los Angeles 2011 Game of Skate runner-up Brandon Westgate, Street League competitors Shane O'Neill and Tom Asta, and Billy Marks, an X Games competitor since 2006, will round out the field.
"Hosting the premier street skaters in the world for a Game of Skate on the ESPN campus is something we've wanted to do for some time," says X Games content strategy senior director Tim Reed. "It's exciting to have the opportunity through the 'World of X Games' platform to program branded events year-round and take advantage of the tremendous distribution that the ABC and ESPN networks offer."
Fans can catch the live stream of the contest on Aug. 1 (10 a.m. ET, ESPN3). A one-hour Game of Skate show will then be televised Aug. 10 at 5 p.m. ET as part of ABC's "World of X Games."