John Amaechi-backed BBA announces new league launch plan


john amaechi speakingThe British Basketball Association has announced plans to launch a new professional basketball league in the UK next year.

The group, which counts ex-NBA star John Amaechi as a co-director, would launch as a rival to the existing British Basketball League – which features the Manchester Giants and 11 other teams – and hopes to be playing competitive games by November 2014.

The league, which originally stated its ambitions in 2007, plans to have an initial eight franchises based in cities across the UK, and aims to recruit a mix of homegrown players and international stars.

Ken Olisa, the BBA’s chairman, said: “There’s an established and fast growing basketball fanbase in the UK and, with a mix of star talent and the best in sport entertainment, I’m confident the BBA league matches will become key dates in the sporting calendar.

“We’re passionate about complementing what the NBA stands for globally and we have the right management team in place and an inviting business proposition that we hope will attract considerable interest. ”

Amaechi spent 5 years in the NBA, playing for Cleveland, Orlando and Utah. His best season, with Orlando Magic (99-00), Amaechi averaged 10.5 ppg and 3.3 rpg per game, playing 80 games (53 started), in 21.1 minutes per match.

Despite being 6’10, Amaechi was never a great shooter, averaging only 40 percent of shooting from the field in his career.

Amaechi played a total of 294 NBA games (93 started), averaging 6.2 ppg and 2.6 rpg in 16.4 minutes per game.

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