Satnam first Indian in NBA draft

Satnam first Indian in NBA draft

Indian basketball finds itself on the cusp of a possible revolution after Satnam Sigh, the teen giant from the hinterlands of Punjab, became the first from the country to be selected in the US’ National Basketball Association (NBA) draft.

The Dallas Mavericks chose the seven-foot-two-inch, 290-pound centre with the 52nd overall pick in the 60-pick draft on Thursday night in New York, sparking jubilation in Satnam’s family and among Indian basketball fans.

The announcement, historic in every way, was quick to well up the eyes of the 19-year-old from the small, obscure village of Ballo Ke in Punjab.  

His family is into farming, a profession which would have naturally been bequeathed to him had Satnam not challenged his destiny. “I feel good,” he said. “I feel excited. I am now with a team I can get a lot better (with) in the next couple of years.”

For Satnam, who moved to the US in 2010 to train at the IMG Academy in Florida, the last five years had been challenging in every possible way. 

He hopes his achievement will help open up the way for many aspiring hoopsters in the country. “The feeling is unreal, but it has happened, and I feel my entry will certainly open the doors for many aspiring basketballers in India,” said Satnam.

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