HoopsHype South Africa rumors

July 29, 2014 Updates
December 8, 2013 Updates

Nelson Mandela wasn't taking visitors. He was pushing 90, the famed vitality fading, but was told that a group there to see him in Johannesburg included Dikembe Mutombo. "He met with us, and he was just so happy to see me," Mutombo, the great former Nuggets center, said by phone. "He said, 'Mutombo my friend, how are you doing?' There were all these NBA players and coaches, and they all were shocked — 'Madiba remembered your name?' He said, 'Thank you very much for what you're doing in Africa. How's the hospital?' To hear that coming from Mandela, it was something I will never forget." Denver Post

"He shared with us so many things, and I will take that experience with me to my grave," Mutombo said. "I got a chance to meet the great leader, the great man of faith, the great hero — not just for Africa, but for the world. "This man spent 27 years in jail, was about to run for presidency of the new South Africa and he decided to meet with us. He believed that sport was the way to bring white and black South Africans together. Mandela unified the nation through the sports — sports can change the community, sports can change the world. It can change a human being with how they think, how they look at each other." Denver Post

December 6, 2013 Updates
September 25, 2013 Updates
September 2, 2013 Updates
September 3, 2012 Updates

Milwaukee Bucks forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute remembers the NBA as a faraway place. Making it a reality hardly seemed possible. "The closest I got to the NBA was getting up at 3 a.m. to watch games on TV," said Mbah a Moute, who grew up with five brothers and three sisters in Cameroon. "When I came to this camp and met Dikembe Mutombo, it was a dream come true. Not only could you see it, but feel it and live it." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

July 10, 2012 Updates

Cole Aldrich On his summer plans: It’s going to be a short, short summer, but we’re going to do Basketball Without Borders in South Africa coming up. I think Serge (Ibaka) and Thabo (Sefolosha) might make it out to South Africa. That’s going to be a huge blessing for us, to see that part of the world and Serge is from that area, so hopefully he can touch on some things. Some things that I’ve never seen in my life and some real life-changing experiences. It’s going to be so much fun but it’s going to be a lot of hard work this summer too though. It’ll be a lot of time in the gym, in the weight room and just working to get better. NBA.com

March 5, 2012 Updates

At the same time Sport and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula has also roped in the South African embassy in the US to facilitate the development of various programmes with the NBA. Ambassador Ebrahim Rasool has also been asked to oversee the process of establishing a joint task team with the leadership of the NBA. This comes after Mbalula visited Orlando, US, last week to watch the All Stars fiesta, which also included a series of meetings with the NBA. "The joint task team, will finalise the agreements on possible exchange programmes and expansion of basketball in South Africa," said Mbalula's spokesman Paena Galane. "During the visit to the US, Mbalula also met with Reverend Jesse Jackson to lobby him to help us in ensuring this process with the NBA becomes successful. Sowetan Live

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