With the NBA taking more initiatives overseas the reimplementation of the NBA Africa Game was a massive hit. Last summer the Olympics caused an off year from this budding relationship with Africa, but the spectacle in Johannesburg’s Ticketpro Dome lived up to the hype. Although not much hype built in the U.S. for the game, African fans wanted to see Team Africa get revenge from 2015’s loss to Team World.
Whether you were rooting for African pride or simply a game packed with NBA entertainment you were not disappointed. With the likes of Kristaps Porzingis (New York Knicks), Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors), Kemba Walker (Charlotte Hornets), and Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks) lining up for Team World against Serge Ibaka (Toronto Raptors), Emmanuel Mudiay (Denver Nuggets), and Victor Oladipo (Indiana Pacers) for Team Africa the game could be advertised as NBA All Star Game Africa 2017. Team World lived up to their title and put on a show with Jaylen Brown (Boston Celtics) putting up a team high 15 pts followed by Andre Drummond’s (Detroit Pistons) 14 pts and 13 rebs and Kristaps Porzingis’ 14 pts and 8 rebs performances. Expectedly, Demarcus Cousins (New Orleans Pelicans) put up an easy double double with 11 pts and 10 rebs.
Team Africa lacked the star firepower that Team World possessed, but they made up for it with the pride and spirit of Africa behind them. Once the 4th quarter came around you could hear the fans passion for Team Africa. The crowd roared as, eventual NBA Africa Game 2017 MVP, Victor Oladipo made shot after shot, keeping Team Africa alive with his 28 pts and 9 rebs. Emmanuel Mudiay also delivered a solid performance for the South African fans with 22 pts 8 rebs and 9 asts.
After days of basketball clinics for the local youth and putting up houses with Habitat for Humanity both teams put on a show for Africa and the world; leaving basketball fans every where craving the start of the NBA season. NBA Africa Game 2017 was another success for Team World as they beat Team Africa 108-97.Read more "NBA Africa Game 2017: A Festival For The Global Game"