NEW YORK and JOHANNESBURG – The National Basketball Association (NBA) and National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) announced on Monday that Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks; Germany), Kemba Walker (Charlotte Hornets; U.S.), Thabo Sefolosha (Atlanta Hawks; Switzerland; parent from South Africa) and Luol Deng (Los Angeles Lakers; South Sudan) will serve as team captains for NBA Africa Game 2017.
Tickets for the NBA’s second game in Africa, taking place Saturday August 5, at the Ticketpro Dome in Johannesburg, South Africa will be available for fans from Thursday, June 22 at 10:00 am CAT by visiting ticketpro.co.za.
Nowitzki, a 13-time NBA All-Star and 2011 NBA Champion, along with Walker, a 2017 NBA All-Star, will co-captain Team World. Deng, a two-time NBA All-Star and Team Africa captain at NBA Africa Game 2015, and Sefolosha, an 11-year NBA veteran whose father was born in South Africa, will lead Team Africa.
“Having South African roots, it’s a dream come true to return to South Africa to play in an NBA game. There are so many talented African players in the league, and it will be an honor to lead them on August 5 in Johannesburg,” Sefolosha said.
NBA Africa Game 2017, which will take place following the 15th edition of Basketball without Borders (BWB) Africa, will once again feature a Team Africa vs. Team World format and will be played in support of UNICEF, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and SOS Children’s Villages South Africa (SOSCVSA).
The game will air live in sub-Saharan Africa on Kwesé’s TV, Internet and mobile platforms, including Kwesé Free Sports, Kwesé Sports, select free-to-air channels, Kwesesports.com, and the Kwesé app.
In February, the NBA and NBPA announced that Bismack Biyombo (Orlando Magic; Democratic Republic of the Congo) and Emmanuel Mudiay (Denver Nuggets; Democratic Republic of Congo) will play for Team Africa, and that CJ McCollum (Portland Trail Blazers; U.S.) will play for Team World. The full rosters of players, coaches and legends will be announced at a later date.
“I’m thrilled to be coming back to Johannesburg to lead Team Africa alongside Thabo. The first NBA Africa Game in 2015 was a lot of fun, and it will be a privilege to play in front of our African fans once again,” Deng added.
The sold-out NBA Africa Game 2015, the first NBA game on the continent, took place August 1 2015 at Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg. There have been more than 70 current or former NBA players from Africa or with ties to the continent, including NBA Africa Ambassador Hakeem Olajuwon (Nigeria) and NBA Global Ambassador Dikembe Mutombo (Democratic Republic of Congo), both of whom played in NBA Africa Game 2015.