Masai Ujiri, the owner, Giant of Africa Basketball Foundation, announced Wednesday its determination to build no less than 100 basketball courts across Africa.
Mr Ujiri said this in Lagos during the inauguration of the new basketball courts at Ilupeju Grammar School and three others.
Previously, the same ceremony was held at Ijeshatedo High School, Oworonshoki Community Park, and Ilupeju basketball courts currently used by the Warriors Basketball Club.
An elated Mr Ujiri said that the essence of providing basketball courts is to nurture talent and develop future champions for Nigeria and the rest of Africa.
“It’s a great day for us, as it has been in preparation for many years; we want to take the opportunity to reach many young people who love basketball.
“We are also taking the initiative in other African countries like Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Senegal and beyond,” Ujiri said, adding that the many schools on the ground would play along and participate in competitions that would sharpen their skills. and broaden their knowledge of the game.
“We’re excited to bring facilities like this closer to aspiring young students as they would be motivated to step onto the courts and train and develop in the game.
“We want to focus on infrastructure, building basketball camps, and we are also focusing on the Giant of Africa festival which will take place next year in Rwanda,” Ujiri said.
Kanu Nwankwo, ex-Nigerian international soccer player, who was the surprise guest at the ceremony, expressed his joy at Ujiri’s initiative.
“It’s a good thing for us to see this kind of development as it would go a long way in encouraging avid basketball players to love the game and work hard.
“Young people have no other excuse than to train and do their best, to grow in the knowledge of the game, indeed it is a great development for Africa and I am proud to be here .
“Someday we would celebrate one player or even many developed players on these fields and I urge players to take the opportunity they have,” said Nwankwo.
Afro-hip hop sensation David Adeleke, commonly known as Davido, was also the guest of the unveiling ceremony and he praised the Giant of Africa Foundation project.
“I am delighted to be here indeed, the construction of infrastructure like this one would greatly contribute to the development of budding talents which abound.
“Personally, I have always believed that this is not all we need to count on government and I am proud to be here today to lend my support.
“I hope we can have a lot more good people like Masai Ujiri to do big projects in sport because we need people like him who invest in music and other sectors that can develop the youth of Nigeria.” said Davido.
Ilupeju’s Onipeju, Bisade Philips, who was also the guest of the unveiling ceremony, said he was very happy with what was happening in front of him; delighted to be present at the event to witness the ceremony himself.
He praised the owner of the Giant Of Africa initiative as he believed it would bring greater development to basketball and the community as a whole.
Mr. Ujiri, a former national team player, became a recruiter in 2002, first for the Orlando Magic and then the Denver Nuggets of the United States, in the National Basketball Association (NBA).
He has worked with the backstage staff of Canada’s Toronto Raptors, reaching the ranks of general manager of the Denver Nuggets and contributing to the development of the game in multiple locations, while also researching players for various clubs.
He is currently vice president and president of Toronto Raptors Basketball Club of Canada where, using his leadership skills, he helped the team win their very first NBA Championship trophy in 2019.
Support PREMIUM TIMES integrity and credibility journalism
Good journalism is expensive. Yet only good journalism can guarantee the possibility of a good society, responsible democracy and transparent government.
For free and ongoing access to the best investigative journalism in the country, we ask that you consider modestly supporting this noble enterprise.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to maintain relevant journalism and ensure that it remains free and accessible to everyone.
Make a donation
TEXT OF THE ANNOUNCEMENT : To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401 …