NBA standouts Kyle Lowry, Victor Oladipo and Kristaps Porzingis were among the players named by the league Thursday to rosters for next month’s NBA Africa Game at Johannesburg.
Team Africa, comprised of NBA players from Africa or who had an African parent, will face Team World, a lineup of global talent, on August 5 in South Africa.
Indiana guard Oladipo, an American whose mother is from Nigeria and whose father is from Sierra Leone, joins a Team Africa lineup led by co-captains Luol Deng, a British native of South Sudan who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, and Thabo Sefolosha, a Swiss swingman whose father is from South Africa that most recently played for the Atlanta Hawks.
The Africa lineup also includes Orlando center Bismack Biyombo and Denver guard Emmanuel Mudiay of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Minnesota forward Gorgui Dieng of Senegal, Congolese-Spanish forward Serge Ibaka of Toronto, Cameroon standout Luc Mbah a Moute of the Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas center Salah Mejri of Tunisia, Atlanta guard Dennis Schroder of Germany whose mother was Gambian and Houston’s Clint Capela, a Swiss center whose parents are from Angola and Congo.
“Returning to Africa to play in the second NBA game on the continent is a dream come true,” Mudiay said. “I’m thankful for the opportunity to participate and look forward to leading Team Africa to a win.”
Team World, captained by German star Dirk Nowitzki of Dallas and American Kemba Walker of Charlotte, will feature Latvian Porzingis from the New York Knicks; Brazilian Leandro Barbosa, most recently with Phoenix, and Americans Lowry of Toronto, Jaylen Brown of Boston, Wilson Chandler of Denver, DeMarcus Cousins of New Orleans, Andre Drummond of Detroit, Courtney Lee of New York and C. J. McCollum of Portland.
“I’m really excited to represent Team World,” Nowitzki said. “It’s great to see how the game is growing across the continent.”
NBA coaches, assistant coaches and referees will take part in the contest as well, with NBA commissioner Adam Silver and NBA players union executive director Michele Roberts attending.
“Basketball is witnessing explosive growth in Africa,” Silver said. “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.”
There have been more than 70 NBA players with ties to Africa, which hosted its first game among NBA talent in August 2015 at Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg.
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