BWB Africa Day 4 Recap: Goodbye From Johannesburg!
Basketball without Borders Africa 2014 came to a conclusion on day four when the campers and players headed to the Wembley Stadium in downtown Johannesburg. Prior to this, the last round of games took place at the American International School to determine who would play in the Championship game later hat afternoon. For Toronto Raptors’ Dwane Casey the camp was a great personal and professional journey.
“The most important thing is you watch the kids learn from day one to day four. The language barrier is there and I wish I could speak another language because a lot gets lost in translation” said Casey. “But basketball is universal, a lot of what they learn are fundamentals and you enjoy seeing what young players age 16 and 17 do and that’s what’s fun for me.”
After lunch all the NBA and WNBA players and coaches went to Wembley. The Basketball without Borders Championship game was won by Dwane Casey’s Team Rockets. The afternoon continued with Three-Point Final, followed by the Girls and Boys All-Star games.
“It’s been amazing an amazing trip and it has been fun” said Amir Johnson from the sidelines at the stadium. It was the first Basketball Without Borders Africa camp for the Toronto Raptors forward.
The All-Star Game featured some of the most talented young players in Africa today. Ousseynou Sarr from Senegal was the All-Star Game Most Valuable Player with his countryman Lamine Diane taking home the High Flyer Award. Mohamed Selmi from Tunisia was the Three-Point Shootout Champion. Young South African Luca Lunneman, who was an outstanding All-Star at the camp last year as well, was named the Basketball without Borders Africa 2014 camp MVP. The All-Star game was also graced by the presence of recording artist Aloe Blacc, himself a big NBA fan.
The fans were also treated to a performance from the Grizz dancers all the way from the Memphis.
The awards ceremony may have concluded this year’s camp, but it’s impact will carry on, not only for the young campers, but for the NBA players and coaches alike.
“Incredible, incredible event. The kids are awesome and they want to learn, so I’m had a wonderful time and it is a privilege for me to come here and be part of this camp” said the camp veteran Houston Rockets scout and BWB coach BJ Johnson.
The 2015 camp will be the 13th edition and will take place in Johannesburg once again next August.