Posted by News Express | 2 July 2015 | 4,149 times
The National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) yesterday named Econet Global Limited, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa, NIKE Inc., South African Airways (SAA), SuperSport, and 947 as partners for NBA Africa Game 2015. The first NBA game in Africa will take place Aug. 1 at Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg, South Africa.
The game will feature a Team Africa vs. Team World format and will be played in support of Boys & Girls Clubs of South Africa, SOS Children’s Villages Association of South Africa and the Nelson Mandela Foundation. The game will air live in Africa on SuperSport.
“This is an historic moment for the NBA and the sport of basketball in Africa, and we are excited to work with such a broad range of partners to make this game possible,” said Amadou Gallo Fall, NBA Vice President and Managing Director-Africa. “The game will impact young people throughout the continent, both on the court and in the community, as we bring some of the world’s most recognisable athletes to Johannesburg to celebrate our long tradition in Africa.”
Team Africa, comprised of players from Africa and second-generation African players, will feature team captain and two-time NBA All-Star Luol Deng (Miami Heat; born in South Sudan), Serge Ibaka (Oklahoma City Thunder; Congo) and Gorgui Dieng (Minnesota Timberwolves; Senegal).
Team World, comprised of players from the rest of the world, will feature team captain and eight-time NBA All-Star Chris Paul (Los Angeles Clippers; U.S.), Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards; U.S.) and Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets; U.S.).
Full Team Africa and Team World rosters will be announced soon.
The NBA has a long history in Africa with more than 35 players from the continent featured on NBA rosters since Hakeem Olajuwon was drafted in 1984. Through NBA Cares, 58 places to live, learn or play have been created in Africa, and Basketball without Borders Africa has been held 12 times on the continent. The league opened an African headquarters in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2010 and recently launched Jr. NBA leagues in Mozambique and Uganda as part of comprehensive grassroots programs across the continent.
•Photo: Miami Heats star Luol Deng will captain Team Africa against Team World during the first NBA game in Africa taking place Aug. 1 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
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