JOHANNESBURG – NBA Africa today announced that it will recognize the league’s 75 most memorable moments on the continent in celebration of the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Season. The campaign begins today and will run on the NBA Africa Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels throughout the landmark NBA 75 season in 2021-22.
The campaign will pay tribute to the NBA’s most iconic players, moments and events throughout the league’s long history in Africa, including Hakeem Olajuwon (Nigeria) becoming the first African player drafted number one overall in 1984, the launch of Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Africa in 2003, the opening of the NBA Africa headquarters in South Africa in 2010, the first NBA game in Africa in 2015, the launch of the Basketball Africa League (BAL) this year, and more. Fans will have the opportunity to rank their top 20 moments later this season.
“The NBA’s history in Africa has spanned more than three decades, with African giants and NBA Legends Hakeem Olajuwon, Dikembe Mutombo and Manute Bol paving the way for the growth of the game and the NBA across the continent,” said NBA Africa CEO Victor Williams. “This is a landmark season for the NBA, and we look forward to highlighting the players, moments and events that represent both the rich history and promising future of basketball in Africa.”
The NBA has a decades-long history in Africa and opened its African headquarters in Johannesburg in 2010. Since then, the league’s efforts in Africa have focused on increasing access to basketball and the NBA through grassroots and elite development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, NBA Africa Games, the launch of the BAL, and more. In May, the NBA launched NBA Africa as a new, standalone entity that conducts the league’s business in Africa, including the BAL.
About the NBA
The NBA is a global sports and media business built around four professional sports leagues: the National Basketball Association, the Women’s National Basketball Association, the NBA G League and the NBA 2K League. The NBA and the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) also jointly operate the Basketball Africa League (BAL). The NBA has established a major international presence with games and programming available in 215 countries and territories in more than 50 languages, and merchandise for sale in more than 100,000 stores in 100 countries on six continents. NBA rosters at the start of the 2020-21 season featured 107 international players from 41 countries. NBA Digital’s assets include NBA TV, NBA.com, the NBA App and NBA League Pass. The NBA has created one of the largest social media communities in the world, with 1.9 billion likes and followers globally across all league, team, and player platforms. Through NBA Cares, the league addresses important social issues by working with internationally recognized youth-serving organizations that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes.