Recapping Tom Brady’s Trip to the Middle Kingdom

Five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback Tom Brady finished up his tour of China last week, flying to Japan on Wednesday as part of the 2017 Tom Brady Asia Tour Powered by Under Armour. He had spent Saturday and Sunday in Beijing, before traveling to Shanghai and spending Monday and Tuesday there.

As is always the case for players visiting Beijing, Brady visited the Great Wall, where he took the time to celebrate Father’s Day with his son. He then took part in a calligraphy course, followed by a training activation with local athletes, and a retail event at the Under Armour Brand House at Xidan Joy City. “My dream is to play a game here in China someday,” Brady said, in a statement that received no shortage of media coverage around the world.

After arriving in Shanghai, Brady stopped by Under Armour’s flagship store on Huaihai Zhong Lu, then visited the Shanghai Traditional Chinese Medicine Research Center, a visit that he had quite a bit of personal interest in due to his well-known fascination with recovery methods. He then attended the grand opening of the Under Armour Jinqiao Brand House in Pudong, where well over 100 fans braved heavy rain in order to interact with him. Brady then finished the day with a visit to perhaps Shanghai’s most famous landmark, the Bund.

Following visits to the Yu Yuan Gardens and Jing’an Temple the next day, Brady then made his final appearance in China at Luwan Stadium on Tuesday night. In front of a packed house of around 2000 fans, Brady helped conduct a clinic for local football players from the China University American Football League (CUAFL). He seemed to embrace the heavy rain that hit the clinic midway through, at one point exclaiming, “Now this is football weather!”

Brady’s most enduring words may have been spoken at the group media interview following the event, where he praised the impressive performance of the local athletes despite the difficult conditions, and suggested that perhaps the best way to grow the sport of American football in China is to make it more available to people in China. Pointing to the success of basketball in China, Brady had this to say:

“If you don’t watch it on TV, it’s hard to become inspired. I think there needs to be opportunities for Chinese to watch the game, and I would love for that to happen, so that more of them can become great fans.”

Read the original article in Life in the Huddle.

Danny Zhang is a Chinese-American college student who grew up playing American football in the Boston area. He has a keen interest in the development of the sport in China, where he has recently studied, worked, and experienced football’s rapid