Melbourne’s Newest NBA Recruit Says Bring The Game To Australia

The time is right

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Just days after being drafted to the NBA, Bendigo’s Dyson Daniels has voiced the time is right for Melbourne to host the first NBA match in Australia.

Daniels was drafted by New Orleans Pelicans with pick eight and will pocket over $7.2 million in his first season – listed as a rookie.

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The 19-year-old told the Herald Sun he would approach NBA commissioner Adam Silver himself on behalf of Victoria in a bid to bring at least exhibition or pre-season games to Australia’s sporting capital.

“I will have to talk to Adam Silver about it but I’m sure that would be huge for Australian basketball,’’ he said.

“And I’m sure that is a possibility.

“Australian teams have come over to the US and played a few games so it would be good to get some NBA teams over to Australia for maybe some pre-season games or something.’’

Daniels joins Melbourne-born NBA greats Josh Giddey and Ben Simmons and Victorian NBA champions Andrew Bogut and Matthew Dellavedova as the 32nd Australian to be drafted to the NBA.

He said the increasing number of Australians making it in the United States was an indicator of it being a time to bring the sport down under.

Giddey only in April said an NBA game in Melbourne would cement the city’s status as Australia’s sporting capital.

“I love the idea – I think it would be great."

Outgoing Sports Minister Martin Pakula in 2018 said he wanted to bring NBA as well as Major League Baseball games to Victoria.

After being selected, Daniels voiced is excitement for being selected with the up-and-coming Pelicans squad.

“Willie has a big basketball brain and played a similar position to me, so I’m sure I’m going to learn a lot from being coached by him,” Daniels told NBA. 

Daniels is a graduate of the NBA Academy, and played in the G League, averaging 11.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 5.1 assists in 15 games. 


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27 June 2022

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