Five years after the founding of the NBA Academy, the NBA’s path to developing an international pipeline is starting to take shape. And it starts with Thunder keeper Josh Giddey.
ESPN Project Analyst Jonathan Givony details the latest endeavors in the NBA academy in a recent article, which points out that Giddey’s writing is of monumental value.
Giddey, who had 18 points, seven rebounds and three assists on an 8-on-12 shot, arguably had one of the best rookie performances of the preseason so far.
Giddey is by far the best product to come out of the Academy so far, but there are seven other players at various academies scattered across Australia, Mexico, Senegal, India and China to make it into the latest ESPN top 100. .
Despite having a gem in Giddey, Givony went on to explain that the Academy still has a lot of work to do.
“Giddey was a huge home run for the Academy, but league leaders will likely be much more excited if and when academies can identify elite NBA talent in non-traditional basketball countries that didn’t already have a great infrastructure and history in place. ” Givony writes. “The three academies in China (now grouped in two) and one in India (currently on hiatus due to COVID-19) have yet to produce a single major player, raising questions over one of the core principles around which the academy was built. – find a Yao Ming-like figure of some of the most important emerging international “priority markets” such as China, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Mexico, Korea, Japan and others and help globalize the NBA, and in turn, create revenue for the league.
Givony went on to detail the main issues surrounding the NBA Academy, most of which would more than likely be dramatically magnified if one of its graduates hadn’t been a top pick in the 2021 NBA Draft.
It is clear that Giddey has been a success for the Academy, now the only question is: will Giddey be a success for the Thunder?
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