NBA tips off grassroots community programs ahead of first-ever NBA games in India

MUMBAI AND NEW YORK – The National Basketball Association (NBA) will begin a series of grassroots community, youth basketball and elite development events and programs to impact thousands of young people, teachers, coaches and families across Mumbai ahead of The NBA India Games 2019, the NBA announced today.  The first-ever NBA game in India will be played in front of 3,000 youth from participating Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA schools, when the Kings and Pacers take the court Oct. 4 at the Dome, NSCI, SVP Stadium in Mumbai.

Throughout the week, NBA Cares, Jr. NBA, Her Time to Play and NBA Academy programming will feature basketball clinics, community impact projects and special events designed to encourage physical fitness, inspire play, empower women and girls and create sustainable, technology-equipped spaces to support STEM education for kids of all ages.

Since the league’s 2008 NBA Legacy Project in Delhi, Jr. NBA and NBA Cares have worked to engage youth across India as part of grassroots efforts that teach the fundamentals and values of the game, including teamwork, community, respect and determination.  Launched in 2013, the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA program has reached more than 10 million youth from 13,000 schools and trained more than 13,000 physical education instructors nationwide.  For the second consecutive year, 10 boys and 10 girls from India represented the country in the second annual Jr. NBA Global Championship in Orlando, Florida.

Continuing and expanding these initiatives ahead of The NBA India Games, the NBA, Pacers and Kings will support five under-resourced municipal schools in and around Mumbai, including Sitaram Mill Compound Marathi BMC School, where league and team executives and former NBA players will break ground on a new basketball court on Oct. 5.  In partnership with the American India Foundation (AIF), this joint Legacy Project will transform the educational experience for hundreds of Mumbai’s most underserved students for years to come.

Students and teachers will have access to new Smart Classrooms, STEM Resource Centers and a Robotics Lab outfitted with new technology, digital STEM curriculums and training, and improved infrastructure for school facilities, as well as the newly-constructed basketball court.  Additionally, Jr. NBA programs will be launched at each school for both boys and girls.

“Our mission is to use basketball as a platform for good and we are thrilled to partner with the American India Foundation to invest in the education and growth, both physically and mentally, of youth in India,” said Kings Chairman, CEO and Governor Vivek Ranadivé.  “I believe in the transformative power of sports and it is a tremendous honor to help bring the game to the country where I was raised as the NBA continues to expand its reach in India and across the globe.”

“We are excited to partner with the American India Foundation to support the health, wellness and education of underserved youth in Mumbai,” said Pacers Chairman, CEO and Governor Herb Simon.  “We are absolutely thrilled to be playing the first-ever games in India and we are proud to be part of the expanding NBA worldwide footprint of our game of basketball.”

See below for a full list of events taking place today through Oct. 5.  For more information, fans in India can follow the NBA on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and use the hashtag #NBAIndiaGames2019.  

Jr. NBA & Reliance Foundation Her Time to Play Clinic (Monday, Sept. 30):

The Jr. NBA and Reliance Foundation will host a Her Time to Play Clinic for more than 50 local girls at the Central Railway Sports Ground, Parel.  Former WNBA player Ebony Hoffman will lead participants in fundamental basketball skills and drills.  Her Time To Play is the league’s initiative to inspire the next generation of girls to play basketball in a positive and healthy, aiming to create fun and safe environments for girls to learn the game, and teach life skills and values to help build confidence and prepare them for the challenges of adolescence.

NBA Academies Women’s Program Camp (Wednesday, Oct. 2 – Sunday, Oct. 6):

Women’s Basketball Hall of Famer Jennifer Azzi and former college coach Blair Hardiek will host the third NBA Academies Women’s Program camp in India at American School of Bombay, bringing together 18 of the top female prospects from across the country.  The NBA Academies Women’s Program is a series of basketball development camps for top female prospects from outside the U.S.

NBA Basketball School Clinic (Tuesday, Oct. 1):

The NBA’s International Basketball Operations department will host an NBA clinic at St. Stanislaus School, Bandra, bringing together more than 40 boys and girls from the NBA Basketball Schools in Mumbai to learn directly from Schrempf and Hoffman.  NBA Basketball School is a network of tuition-based basketball development programs around the world open to international male and female players ages 6-18.

NBA India Coaches Clinic (Thursday, Oct. 3):

The NBA India Coaches Clinic will feature coaches from the Kings and Pacers leading a clinic at the Central Railway Sports Ground, Parel for 100 coaches from across India.  The clinic will be an opportunity for participants to receive invaluable insights on coaching techniques from some of the NBA’s top coaches.

NBA Cares Clinic (Thursday, Oct. 3):

NBA Cares will host a basketball clinic for youth from the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA program at the Dome, NSCI, SVP Stadium.  Pacers players Malcolm Brogdon, Alize Johnson and Goga Bitadze, and Kings players Buddy Hield, Bogdan Bogdanović and Dewayne Dedmon will lead 50 boys and girls in oncourt skill and drills covering shooting, passing and dribbling.

NBA, Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings Legacy Project (Saturday, Oct. 5):

The NBA, Pacers and Kings, in partnership with AIF, will support five under-resourced municipal schools in and around Mumbai, including Sitaram Mill Compound Marathi BMC School, where NBA, Kings and Pacers executives and former NBA players will break ground on a new basketball court.  Each school will receive free digital STEM curriculums and training for teachers, refurbishments to infrastructure in school facilities (computers, TVs, projectors, electrical wiring, furniture, water, sanitation and hygiene stations, etc.), two new Smart Classrooms and a STEM Resource Centre.  In addition to the court, Marathi BMC School will receive a new Robotics Lab.

About NBA India
The NBA opened an office in Mumbai in 2011 and formed NBA India.  NBA India is primarily involved in the development and growth of basketball in India.  As a part of its efforts, NBA India, in partnership with the Reliance Foundation, launched the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA program in 2013.  The program has engaged more than 10 million youth across 10,000 schools and trained more than 10,000 physical education instructors nationwide.  In May 2017, NBA India officially opened The NBA Academy India, an elite basketball training center at Jaypee Greens Integrated Sports Complex in Delhi National Capital Region (NCR) for the top male and female prospects from throughout India.  More than 3.1 million fans follow the NBA India Facebook page (  In December 2018, NBA India announced that the Indiana Pacers and Sacramento Kings will play in two preseason games in Mumbai in October 2019, marking the first-ever NBA games in India.