According to a release, 19 players will participate in the NBA Africa Game 2015, an exhibition contest intended to spread the league’s popularity around the world.
The contest’s format is Team World vs. Team Africa. Representatives of the latter team are African-born and second-generation players.
Miami Heat small forward Luol Deng will captain Team Africa. Serge Ibaka, Nicolas Batum, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Boris Diaw, Gorgui Dieng, Bismack Biyombo, Al-Farouq Aminu, Festus Ezeli and Luc Mbah a Moute round out the roster.
Captain Chris Paul and the Brothers Gasol—Marc and Pau—highlight a strong Team World squad. Kenneth Faried, Bradley Beal, Nikola Vucevic, Marcus Smart, Jeff Green and Evan Turner complete the lineup.
The teams will play in front of a sold-out crowd.
Beyond the sellout, however, perhaps the coolest part of the event is the coaches involved.
San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will lead Team Africa, while Mike Budenholzer (Atlanta Hawks) and Monty Williams (Oklahoma City Thunder) will be his assistants. Lionel Hollins (Brooklyn Nets) and Brad Stevens (Boston Celtics) will direct Team World.
Team World should be favored to win, but the coaching trio of Pop, Bud and Williams could be enough to overtake more talent on the court. The NBA Africa Game will certainly be fun to watch.
Tipoff is scheduled for 9 a.m. ET. ESPN will broadcast the contest, which will be played at Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Photo: USA Today Sports