NBA: Satnam Singh has shot at going where no Indian has been
Satnam Singh's world could change in a few hours. A day before the National Basketball Association (NBA) draft arrives to confirm or leave out India's talented player, the 19-year-old said it was not easy getting into the league.other Updated: Jun 26, 2015 09:11 IST
Satnam Singh's world could change in a few hours. A day before the National Basketball Association (NBA) draft arrives to confirm or leave out India's talented player, the 19-year-old said it was not easy getting into the league.
The youngster, who hails from a remote village in Punjab and stands 7 feet 2 inches tall, is hoping to become the first player born on the subcontinent to make the league.
Canada-born Sim Bhullar is the NBA's first player of Indian descent to play in the league.
"A lot of people are texting me every day, 'When are you going to the NBA?' And I say, 'It's not easy.' You work hard, then you go play in the NBA. It's not easy for anyone," Satnam was quoted as saying by news.com.au on Thursday.
Satnam also spoke about how Indians were taking to the sport in the country, stating it has developed over the last few years.
"India is a lot better now, A lot of NBA coaches are over there training in Bombay (Mumbai), Delhi and Punjab — my state — too. It's gotten a lot better in the last two years, three years. It's (very) popular over there."
Satnam was sent to a government-funded basketball academy when he was 12 and after two years he moved to Florida, where has spent the last five years developing his game.
At 19, he may be considered too raw to play in the NBA, but could be drafted by a team and moved overseas to develop in another professional league.
One of the teams to have had a look at Satnam was Boston Celtics who have won the NBA a record 17 times.
Celtics director of player personnel Austin Ainge said he was, "the international man of mystery".
"It's my first time seeing him," Ainge said last month.
"He's humungous. He's really, really big. And a very nice kid. He's got an interesting story."