The NBA takes a leap towards internationalization

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For the fifth consecutive year, more than 100 basketball players of the NBA come from other parts of the world

The NBA takes a leap towards internationalization

For the fifth consecutive year, the NBA surpasses the 100 foreign players who see action in that league. The NBA is committed with the internationalization and has achieved this by keeping more than a hundred athletes on the boards among their payrolls. The NBA portal reports that this year number rises to 108, being very close to the record of 113 established in 2016-2017 and the 42 countries represented equally the best mark, in 2017-2018.

The NBA website refers to Canada as the country with the most international players, adding 11. Australia and France follow with 9, the same as Spain, although the NBA officially leaves it at 7 by not counting the nationalized Serge Ibaka and Nikola Mirotic. Then comes Germany (6), Croatia, Serbia and Turkey (all three with 5).

A greater chance

The Venezuelan newspaper La Verdad, in its web portal, states that the Dallas Mavericks have the largest number of international players, with seven, including the Puerto Rican José Juan Barea, one of only two Hispanic Americans in the league after the retirement of the Argentine Manu Ginobili The other is the Dominican Al Horford, of the Boston Celtics.

Latin America, there are also three other players, who are Brazilians: Cristiano Felicio, Raul Neto, and Nené.

Utah and Los Angeles have seven foreigners each. Five clubs; Boston, New York, Oklahoma City, Philadelphia and San Antonio, have five international players.


The portal says that the NBA meets an effective process of globalization, where its expansion allows to bring the best talent not born in the United States to the best basketball on the planet.

Until a few years ago, the NBA was exclusively for the Americans, but including players from all over the world has allowed the league not only to promote the practice of basketball, but has also shown much more parity among the delegations that attend the Olympic games and world events, despite the constant victory of the United States.

The San Antonio Spurs of Gregg Popovich were one of the pioneers in recruiting players from the old continent and opening training centers of the organization outside the American territory to take them to the NBA. Among his finds are Tony Parker and Manu Ginobilli , who contributed to the conquest of club titles.

You may be interested in reading: The NBA will not be the same without 'Manu' Ginóbili


Giannis Antetokounmpo is a Greek player who celebrates his sixth season with Milwaukee, and in the 2017-18 harvest, he reached 1,000 assists with a hit in the shot higher than 50% in his career at the age of 23, figures that, to that old, previously only Magic Johnson had achieved.

The Cameroonian Joel Embiid, who was chosen in the third position of the draft by Philadelphia and became the third Cameroonian player to reach the NBA, had brilliant parchments in the previous season to exhibit 22.9 points per game, all in the 63 games played as a starter.

The Slovenian Luka Doncic was chosen in June 2018 in the 3rd position of the NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks and then transferred to the Dallas Mavericks, where he emphasizes his versatility and because he can generate his own pitches from any position.

The Australian Ben Simmons was rookie of the year in the previous season, which shows great depth. In his short period as a professional, Simmons has already been compared to players of very high caliber, such as LeBron James and "Magic" Johnson, due to their style of play and physical characteristics. He is the tallest player to play mainly the basic role, with a height of 208 cm.

LatinAmerican Post | Henderson Velasquez
Translated from "La NBA salta hacia la internacionalización"

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