Blazers F Al-Farouq Aminu to play for Team Africa in NBA’s 1st game on African continent
Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu has been selected to be a part of Team Africa in the NBA’s first ever game on the African Continent. The game is being billed as Africa vs. The World. Team Africa will be coached by Gregg Popovich.
The game will be played on August 1 in Johannesburg, South Africa and will be broadcast live in the United States at 6:00 AM local time on the West Coast.
Aminu will be joined by former Blazer Nicolas Batum.
Here are the rosters for the game for each team according to the release sent out this morning by the NBA.
Luol Deng (Miami Heat; Great Britain; born in South Sudan)
Al-Farouq Aminu (Portland Trail Blazers; U.S.; parents from Nigeria)
Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks; Greece; parents from Nigeria)
Nicolas Batum (Charlotte Hornets; France; parent from Cameroon)
Bismack Biyombo (Toronto Raptors; Democratic Republic of the Congo)
Boris Diaw (San Antonio Spurs; France; parent from Senegal)
Gorgui Dieng (Minnesota Timberwolves; Senegal),
Festus Ezeli (Golden State Warriors; Nigeria),
Serge Ibaka (Oklahoma City Thunder; Congo, but will not play due to injury)
Luc Mbah a Moute (Sacramento Kings; Cameroon)
Head Coach: Gregg Popovich (Spurs)
Assistants: Mike Budenholzer (Atlanta Hawks), Monty Williams (Oklahoma City)
General Managers: Billy King (Brooklyn Nets), Masai Ujiri (Toronto Raptors)
Chris Paul (Los Angeles Clippers; U.S.)
Marc Gasol (Memphis Grizzlies; Spain)
Pau Gasol (Chicago Bulls; Spain)
Jeff Green (Memphis Grizzlies; U.S.),
Marcus Smart (Boston Celtics; U.S.)
Evan Turner (Boston Celtics; U.S.)
Nikola Vucevic (Orlando Magic; Montenegro)
Head Coach: Lionel Hollins (Brooklyn Nets)
Assistant Coach: Brad Stevens (Celtics)
General Manager: R.C. Buford (Spurs)
The NBA will also do a series of clinics, camps and charity work in Johannesburg in the week leading up to the game on August 1. For the NBA’s first game in Africa, they are bringing out many of game’s biggest stars.
It’s the start of a busy summer for Aminu who will also be playing for the Nigerian National team at Afrobasket in Tunisia this August.
Aminu isn’t the only Blazers player who will have international responsibilities.
Damian Lillard will surely get an invite to the Team USA mini-camp. Ditto for newly acquired center Mason Plumlee who made Team USA last year during the World Cup. New addition Moe Harkless will play for Puerto Rico in the FIBA America’s tournament. Undrafted rookie Luis Montero will also play for the Domincan National Team to play in the same tournament, according to league source.
On the sidelines, Blazers assistant Jay Triano is the head coach for Team Canada and fellow assistant David Vanterpool is on his staff for the summer.