Magic’s Biyombo, others headline second NBA Game in Africa on Aug. 5

February 24, 2017
Source: Patrick Paintsil | thebftonline.com | Ghana
Magic’s Biyombo, others headline second NBA Game in Africa on Aug. 5

-NBA Africa Game Returns to South Africa in Team Africa vs. Team World Format-

- Game Will Air Live in Sub-Saharan Africa on Kwesé’s TV, Internet and Mobile Platforms -

The National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) announced that NBA Africa Game 2017, the NBA’s second game in Africa, will take place Saturday, Aug. 5 at the Ticketpro Dome in Johannesburg, South Africa.  

The announcement was made at the annual NBA Africa All-Star Luncheon in New Orleans by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts and NBA Vice President and Managing Director for Africa, Amadou Gallo Fall, who were joined by NBA Africa Game 2017 players Bismack Biyombo (Orlando Magic; Democratic Republic of the Congo), CJ McCollum (Portland Trail Blazers; U.S.) and Emmanuel Mudiay (Denver Nuggets; Democratic Republic of the Congo).

The game comes off the 15th edition of Basketball without Borders (BWB) Africa, and will once again feature a Team Africa vs. Team World format to be played in support of UNICEF, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and SOS Children’s Villages South Africa (SOSCVSA). 

Team Africa will be comprised of players from Africa and second generation African players, and Team World will be comprised of players from the rest of the world.

The game will air live in sub-Saharan Africa on Kwesé’s TV, Internet and mobile platforms, including Kwesé Free Sports, Kwesé Sports, select free-to-air channels, Kwesesports.com, and the Kwesé app.

Biyombo, the seventh overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft and a member of Team Africa in NBA Africa Game 2015, will join 2015-16 NBA All-Rookie Second Team member Mudiay on Team Africa.  McCollum, the 2015-16 Kia NBA Most Improved Player, will play for Team World.

Full rosters of players, coaches and legends, along with ticket information will be announced at a later date. 

The sold-out NBA Africa Game 2015, the first NBA game on the continent, took place Aug. 1, 2015 at Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg and was played in support of Boys & Girls Clubs of South Africa, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and SOSCVSA.

For more information, fans can visitwww.NBA.com/Africa, the league’s official online destination in Africa, and follow the NBA on Facebook (NBA Africa) and Twitter (@NBA_Africa). 

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, speaking of the game, said: “Basketball is witnessing explosive growth in Africa. Our return to Johannesburg this summer is part of the league’s continued commitment to bring the authentic NBA experience to fans around the world.  I would like to thank the NBPA for their participation and for being terrific partners on this game and surrounding events.”

NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts added: “NBA players are among the most popular athletes in the world, and we’re excited to continue the game’s global growth with this second game in Africa.  Our players remain committed to growing the game on the continent, and this showcase will continue to build on the positive momentum we generated with the historic first game in 2015.”

According to NBA Vice President and Managing Director for Africa, Amadou Gallo Fall, the NBA Africa Game 2015 was a resounding success and expressed gratitude for the support of the players and team personnel who participated.  

“While we are investing more than ever in grassroots programming and in delivering locallyrelevant content to our fans across the continent, there is no substitute for live NBA games. I hope fans from throughout Africa will join us in Johannesburg or on Kwesé’s platforms on August 5 to see some of the NBA’s best players compete on African soil,” he added.

Econet Founder and Executive Chairman Strive Masiyiwa, said: “Kwesé is fast becoming the destination of choice for sports fanatics across sub-Saharan Africa, and the ability to exclusively carry NBA content, including NBA Africa Game 2017, on all Kwesé platforms is indicative of the strides we are making in the sports and broadcast industries.”

Orlando Magic forward/center Bismack Biyombo, also emphasised: “It was an honor and privilege to play in the first NBA game in Africa in 2015. I’m looking forward to another great game in August.”

Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum, is delighted to be part of this year’s event: “I’ve heard so many great things from players around the league who traveled to South Africa in 2015 for the first NBA Africa Game and Basketball without Borders.  I can’t wait to suit up for Team World in Johannesburg this summer.”

Denver Nuggets guard Emmanuel Mudiay, indicated: “Returning to Africa to play in the second NBA game on the continent ‘is a dream come true’.  I’m thankful for the opportunity to participate and look forward to leading Team Africa to a win on August 5.”