Home NBA NBA Rosters Feature 107 International Players From 41 Countries

NBA Rosters Feature 107 International Players From 41 Countries

The National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced that 107 international players from 41 countries are on opening-night rosters for the 2020-21 season

Giannis Antetokounmpo Bucks
Photo: Morry Gash/Associated Press

NEW YORK, United States of America, December 23, 2020/ — Opening-Night Rosters Feature Record 17 Canadian Players and Record-Tying 14 African Players; Seventh Consecutive Season League Has at Least 100 International Players.

The National Basketball Association (NBA) (http://www.NBA.com) today announced that 107 international players from 41 countries are on opening-night rosters for the 2020-21 season, including a record 17 Canadian players and a record-tying 14 African players. This marks the seventh consecutive season that opening-night rosters feature at least 100 international players. All 30 teams have at least one international player.

In addition to the 107 international players on 2020-21 opening-night rosters, there are 10 international players from a record-tying eight countries on “two-way” contracts, allowing them to play in up to 50 NBA games this season.

For the seventh consecutive year, Canada (17 players) is the most-represented country outside of the U.S., followed by France (nine players), Australia (eight players), Serbia and Germany (six players each).

The Washington Wizards have an NBA-high seven international players. The Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets each have six, while the New Orleans Pelicans, Oklahoma City Thunder and Toronto Raptors each have five. 

The 2020-21 NBA season begins tonight with a doubleheader as part of Kia NBA Tip-Off 2020. The first game features the Brooklyn Nets hosting the Golden State Warriors at 2 a.m. CAT. In the second game, the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers take on the LA Clippers at 5 a.m. CAT.

A record 34 players on opening-night rosters participated in Basketball Without Borders (BWB) prior to starting their NBA careers, surpassing the previous record of 30 set in 2019-20. Former BWB campers include Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers; Cameroon; BWB Africa 2011), Jamal Murray (Nuggets; Canada; BWB Global 2015) and Pascal Siakam (Raptors; Cameroon; BWB Africa 2012). BWB is the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach program that has seen 76 former campers drafted into the NBA or signed as free agents since 2001.

In addition to the 107 international players on 2020-21 opening-night rosters, there are 10 international players from a record-tying eight countries on “two-way” contracts, allowing them to play in up to 50 NBA games this season. There are also a number of American players with ties to other countries, including more than 30 players with at least one parent from Africa. Among the American players with ties to other countries are Jordan Clarkson (Utah Jazz; ties to the Philippines), Victor Oladipo (Indiana Pacers; ties to Nigeria), Matisse Thybulle (76ers; ties to Australia and Haiti) and Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota Timberwolves; ties to the Dominican Republic).

The records for international players (113) and countries and territories represented (42) were set at the start of the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons, respectively.

Below please find international player milestones and storylines for the upcoming season:

  • A record six international players were named to the 2019-20 All-NBA Team: Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks; Greece; ties to Nigeria; All-NBA First Team); Luka Dončić (Mavericks; Slovenia; All-NBA First Team); Nikola Jokić (Nuggets; Serbia; All-NBA Second Team); Siakam (All-NBA Second Team); Rudy Gobert (Jazz; France; All-NBA Third Team); and Ben Simmons (76ers; Australia; All-NBA Third Team).
  • There are 14 international players on opening-night rosters who have been NBA All-Stars: Antetokounmpo, Dončić, Goran Dragić (Miami Heat; Slovenia), Embiid, Marc Gasol (Lakers; Spain), Gobert, Al Horford (Oklahoma City Thunder; Dominican Republic), Kyrie Irving (Nets; Australia), Jokić, Kristaps Porzingis (Mavericks; Latvia), Domantas Sabonis (Pacers; Lithuania), Siakam, Simmons and Nikola Vučević (Orlando Magic; Montenegro).
  • As part of the NBA.com 2020-2021 GM Survey (http://on.nba.com/3nKFFhY), Antetokounmpo and Dončić were voted the No. 1 and No. 2 players most likely to win 2020-21 Kia NBA Most Valuable Player (32% and 21% of votes, respectively), and tied for the No. 1 player with whom general managers would most want to start a franchise (43% of votes each). For the second straight season, Jokić was voted the best center in the NBA (50% of votes).
  • Deni Avdija, who became the highest-drafted Israeli player ever when he was selected ninth overall by the Washington Wizards in the NBA Draft 2020 presented by State Farm®, is scheduled to make his regular-season debut when the Wizards visit the 76ers on Wednesday, Dec. 23 at 7 p.m. ET on NBA League Pass.
  • Killian Hayes, who became the highest-drafted French player ever when he was selected seventh overall by the Detroit Pistons, is scheduled to make his regular-season debut when the Pistons visit the Timberwolves on Dec. 23 at 8 p.m. ET on NBA League Pass.
  • Nine players from or with at least one parent from Nigeria were selected in NBA Draft 2020, including Precious Achiuwa (Heat; Nigeria) and Udoka Azubuike (Jazz; Nigeria).

Below please find the full list of international players on 2020-21 opening-night rosters (active and inactive):

CountryNameTeamTies to Other Countries**
AngolaBruno FernandoAtlanta Hawks
ArgentinaFacundo Campazzo*Denver Nuggets
AustraliaAron BaynesToronto Raptors
AustraliaMatthew DellavedovaCleveland Cavaliers
AustraliaDanté ExumCleveland Cavaliers
AustraliaJosh GreenDallas Mavericks
AustraliaJoe InglesUtah Jazz
AustraliaKyrie IrvingBrooklyn Nets
AustraliaPatty MillsSan Antonio Spurs
AustraliaBen SimmonsPhiladelphia 76ers
AustriaJakob PoeltlSan Antonio Spurs
BahamasBuddy HieldSacramento Kings
BahamasDeandre Ayton*Phoenix SunsNigeria
Bosnia and HerzegovinaJusuf NurkićPortland Trail Blazers
BrazilBruno Caboclo*Houston Rockets
BrazilCristiano FelicioChicago Bulls
BrazilRaul NetoWashington Wizards
CameroonJoel Embiid*Philadelphia 76ers
CameroonPascal Siakam*Toronto Raptors
CanadaNickeil Alexander-WalkerNew Orleans Pelicans
CanadaRJ Barrett*New York Knicks
CanadaKhem BirchOrlando Magic
CanadaIgnas Brazdeikis*New York KnicksLithuania
CanadaDillon BrooksMemphis Grizzlies
CanadaBrandon ClarkeMemphis Grizzlies
CanadaLuguentz Dort*Oklahoma City Thunder
CanadaCory JosephSacramento KingsTrinidad and Tobago
CanadaMfiondu KabengeleLA ClippersDemocratic Republic of the Congo
CanadaTrey LylesSan Antonio Spurs
CanadaMychal MulderGolden State Warriors
CanadaJamal Murray*Denver Nuggets
CanadaKelly Olynyk*Miami Heat
CanadaDwight PowellDallas Mavericks
CanadaTristan ThompsonBoston CelticsJamaica
CanadaAndrew WigginsGolden State Warriors
CanadaShai Gilgeous-Alexander*Oklahoma City Thunder
CroatiaBojan BogdanovićUtah Jazz
CroatiaLuka Šamanić*San Antonio Spurs
CroatiaDario Šarić*Phoenix Suns
CroatiaIvica ZubacLA Clippers
Czech RepublicTomáš Satoranský*Chicago Bulls
Democratic Republic of the CongoBismack BiyomboCharlotte Hornets
Dominican RepublicAl HorfordOklahoma City Thunder
EgyptAbdel NaderPhoenix Suns
FinlandLauri Markkanen*Chicago Bulls
FranceNicolas Batum*LA ClippersCameroon
FranceSekou Doumbouya*Detroit PistonsGuinea
FranceEvan FournierOrlando MagicAlgeria
FranceRudy GobertUtah Jazz
FranceKillian Hayes*Detroit Pistons
FranceTimothé Luwawu-CabarrotBrooklyn NetsDemocratic Republic of the Congo
FranceThéo MaledonOklahoma City Thunder
FranceFrank Ntilikina*New York Knicks
FranceVincent PoirierPhiladelphia 76ers
GabonChris SilvaMiami Heat
GeorgiaGoga Bitadze*Indiana Pacers
GermanyIsaac Bonga*Washington Wizards
GermanyIsaiah Hartenstein*Denver Nuggets
GermanyMaxi KleberDallas Mavericks
GermanyDennis SchröderLos Angeles LakersThe Gambia
GermanyDaniel TheisBoston Celtics
GermanyMoritz WagnerWashington Wizards
GreeceGiannis AntetokounmpoMilwaukee BucksNigeria
GreeceThanasis AntetokounmpoMilwaukee BucksNigeria
IsraelDeni Avdija*Washington Wizards
ItalyDanilo Gallinari*Atlanta Hawks
ItalyNicolò MelliNew Orleans Pelicans
JamaicaNick RichardsCharlotte Hornets
JapanRui Hachimura*Washington WizardsBenin
LatviaDavis BertansWashington Wizards
LatviaAnžejs Pasečņiks*Washington Wizards
LatviaKristaps PorziņģisDallas Mavericks
LatviaRodions KurucsBrooklyn Nets
LithuaniaDomantas SabonisIndiana Pacers
LithuaniaDeividas Sirvydis*Detroit Pistons
LithuaniaJonas Valančiūnas*Memphis Grizzlies
MontenegroNikola VučevićOrlando Magic
New ZealandSteven AdamsNew Orleans Pelicans
NigeriaPrecious AchiuwaMiami Heat
NigeriaUdoka AzubuikeUtah Jazz
NigeriaJosh OkogieMinnesota Timberwolves
Republic of the CongoSerge IbakaLA ClippersSpain
SenegalGorgui Dieng*Memphis Grizzlies
SerbiaNemanja BjelicaSacramento Kings
SerbiaBogdan BogdanovićAtlanta Hawks
SerbiaNikola JokićDenver Nuggets
SerbiaBoban MarjanovićDallas Mavericks
SerbiaAleksej Pokuševski*Oklahoma City Thunder
SerbiaAlen SmailagićGolden State Warriors
SloveniaVlatko Čančar Denver Nuggets
SloveniaGoran DragićMiami Heat
SloveniaLuka DončićDallas Mavericks
South SudanThon Maker*Cleveland CavaliersAustralia and Uganda
South SudanWenyen GabrielNew Orleans Pelicans
SudanBol BolDenver Nuggets
SpainMarc Gasol*Los Angeles Lakers
SpainJuancho HernangómezMinnesota Timberwolves
SpainWilly Hernangómez*New Orleans Pelicans
SpainRicky RubioMinnesota Timberwolves
St. LuciaChris BoucherToronto RaptorsCanada
SwitzerlandClint CapelaAtlanta HawksAngola and Republic of the Congo
TurkeyEnes Kanter*Portland Trail Blazers
TurkeyFurkan KorkmazPhiladelphia 76ers
TurkeyCedi OsmanCleveland Cavaliers
UkraineAlex LenToronto Raptors
UkraineSvi MykhailiukDetroit Pistons
United KingdomOG AnunobyToronto RaptorsNigeria


Below please find the full list of international two-way players:

CountryNameTeamTies to Other Countries**
AustraliaWill MagnayNew Orleans Pelicans
CanadaNate DarlingCharlotte Hornets
FranceAdam MokokaChicago BullsRepublic of the Congo
FranceKillian TillieMemphis Grizzlies
GreeceKostas Antetokounmpo*Los Angeles LakersNigeria
GuineaMamadi DiakiteMilwaukee Bucks
ItalyNico MannionGolden State Warriors
JapanYuta WatanabeToronto Raptors
SenegalTacko FallBoston Celtics
SenegalKarim ManéOrlando MagicCanada

*Participated in Basketball Without Borders (BWB)

**Not an exhaustive list of every player tie

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