The NBA has done a great job of spreading the game of basketball all over the globe. One of the more popular examples of these efforts is the NBA Africa Game, where players put on a show halfway across the world. The Los Angeles Lakers will certainly be doing their part ot participate this year, sending Luol Deng, JaVale McGee and Rob Pelinka, with Lakers legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar also in attendance.
Deng has been captain of team Africa in the last two iterations of the game, and even won MVP in 2015. In what was a trend last season, though, Deng didn’t play in last year’s game. Still, having been born in Wau, South Sudan and spent a good portion of his childhood in Egypt, Deng has made a priority to give back however possible and been one of the faces of the NBA’s efforts in this regard.
McGee will suit up for Team World (which is made up mostly of American players) in what will be his first NBA Africa game. Most think of McGee as kind of a jokester, but he really does his part in charitable efforts off the court. It’s too bad his reputation proceeds him the way it does, as McGee has quite a bit to offer.
It’s not clear as of yet what Pelinka will be doing in the game, but he did play college basketball at the University of Michigan. It would be fun to see him suit up in one way or another and either way, it’s great to see him contributing to the efforts in any way he can.
Tipping next Saturday (August 4) at 8 a.m. PT, the game will be played at Sun Arena at Time Square and in support of the Nelsa Mandela Foundation, in honor of the late South African president. The game will take place following the 16th edition of Basketball Without Borders Africa.