BEIJING -- NBA commissioner Adam Silver announced the launch of NBA Academies, an international elite development initiative that will consist of a network of elite training centers around the world to develop top international male and female prospects.
The first three academies will open in the Chinese cities of Urumqi, Jinan and Hangzhou.
“Nothing is more important than to grow the game of basketball here in China,” Silver said. “We’re thankful for the terrific reception we’ve had in China. It’s very important that we give back as well. One of our means of giving back is to help develop elite players here. Elite players that can play in the CBA (Chinese Basketball Association), elite players who can bring glory to their country through the national team and elite players who maybe can play in the National Basketball Association one day.”
Each elite training center will be staffed with NBA-trained coaches to foster the development of prospects on and off the court, both during and after their basketball careers. Each center will house under-16 and under-18 teams that will compete against top competition throughout the year.
“Want these players to have the opportunity to play against other elite players,” said Silver. “What we know from our NBA experience that in order to develop the best players, in addition to the wonderful training they’re getting already here in China, they need to play against top-notch competition. That’s what we’re going to do as an important measure to see more great Chinese players coming into the NBA.”