Sport - Basketball

First NBA game in Africa to be played in Johannesburg

Miami Heat forward Luol Deng (right) dribbles the ball in the match against Detroit Pistons.
Miami Heat forward Luol Deng (right) dribbles the ball in the match against Detroit Pistons. Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA announced its first game in Africa that will take place in August featuring players from the African continent. 

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The game will be held at the Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg on 1 August and will feature a Team Africa consisting of first- and second-generation NBA stars from Africa and Team World, composed of players from other regions.

Team Africa will be led by two-time NBA All-Star Luol Deng of the Miami Heat, who was born in what is now South Sudan.

Eight-time NBA All-Star Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers will captain Team World.

Speaking to media after the announcement, Deng said that he was very excited and looking forward to the match.

“It’s a proud moment for a lot of Africans. It’s a proud moment for a lot of kids in both Africa and outside," he said. "There are a lot of people who don’t live in Africa but have family and lot of involvement. I am very happy that I am participating in it."

Deng said he was very happy that the NBA is doing more to get people in Africa engaged in the sport.

“Hopefully this would be the first game of many,” he said.

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