The National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced the launch of the league’s first Dribble-a-thon in India, a basketball challenge event featuring participants ages six and above dribbling a basketball across a one kilometer course. The event will tip off Saturday, February 29 at Sports Complex, Sector 7, Chandigarh, and will travel to multiple cities across India over the next few months, including Jaipur and Ghaziabad.
“We launched Dribble-a-thon to promote basketball participation in a fun and unique way,” said NBA India Managing Director Rajesh Sethi. “With the increasing popularity of basketball and the NBA across India, we are always looking for new and exciting ways to engage with our fans.”
In addition to the on-court challenge, 10 lucky participants in each city will be randomly selected to win a smartphone. Dribble-a-thon will also offer exciting fan experiences including basketball arcade games, NBA 2K competitions, and more.
To tip off the event, the NBA will unveil a 16-foot basketball that will travel from Chandigarh to all the cities where Dribble-a-thon will be held. Participants and fans across all cities will be able write messages on the ball to connect with one another and express what basketball means to them.
More than 350 live NBA games are available each season on SONY TEN 1 and SONY TEN 3. Fans can also catch the action live on NBA’s direct-to-consumer product League Pass. NBA products are widely available in more than 750 retail stores across India and on local e-commerce site, NBAStore.in on Myntra. Since 2006, more than 35 current and former NBA and WNBA players have visited India on behalf of the NBA. In October 2019, The NBA India Games 2019 featured the Sacramento Kings and Indiana Pacers playing two preseason games on Oct. 4 and Oct. 5 at the Dome, NSCI, SVP Stadium in Mumbai, marking the first games that teams from a North American sports league have played in India.
The NBA Academy India, an elite basketball training center in Delhi National Capital Region (NCR) for the top male and female prospects from throughout India and the first of its kind in the country, officially opened in May 2017 and builds on the NBA’s existing basketball and youth development initiatives in India, including The Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA program, ACG-NBA Jump program and the NBA Basketball Schools.
The Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA program has reached more than 10 million youth from 13,000 schools and trained more than 13,000 physical education instructors nationwide since its launch in 2013. ACG-NBA Jump, India’s first national basketball scouting program, was launched in 2015. Palpreet Singh, the top prospect, of the first ACG-NBA Jump program, attended the 2016 NBA G League National Tryout in the United States and was drafted by the Long Island Nets in the 2016 NBA G-League Draft. The NBA launched NBA Basketball School, a network of tuition-based basketball development programs around the world open to male and female players ages 6-18 from outside the U.S., in April 2017 in New Delhi and Mumbai.