The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Basketball England announced today that the Jr. NBA Basketball England League will expand from five to sixteen leagues by the year 2020. The growth of the secondary school programme for boys and girls aged 11-12 will create opportunities for over 7,200 children to play the game in England. Each school will represent one of the 30 NBA teams and will receive corresponding NBA team branded kit for their games.
The expansion will take place across the country with a Jr. NBA Basketball England League due to launch in the East of England in January followed by new leagues in 2018-19 in the South East, Yorkshire, and the East Midlands.
“It is great to see the continued growth of the Jr. NBA Leagues in England expanding the opportunity for boys and girls to participate in basketball activities” said Senior Vice President & EMEA Managing Director Ben Morel. “The Jr. NBA Leagues provide the platform for youth to experience basketball in a fun and exciting environment which will inspire more kids to play the sport across the country.”
Basketball England Chief Executive Officer Stewart Kellett said, “We’re very excited about the expansion of our partnership with the NBA and the scaling up of the Jr. NBA programme. The NBA brand helps support our commitment to growing the game, keeping more young people engaged in basketball and using the sport to develop young people both on and off the court. The Jr. NBA programme helps us work towards all those objectives and with the support of the NBA and Sport England, we’re delighted that this project can continue to grow.”
In each league, 30 secondary schools will play in a series of regular season games followed by single-elimination playoffs and a Jr. NBA league Finals event.
Leveraging the excitement of the NBA, the leagues will again aim to promote the shared NBA and Basketball England values of teamwork, leadership, fitness and healthy living through league games, Jr. NBA youth clinics, and league Finals events.
The Jr. NBA, the league’s global youth basketball program for boys and girls, teaches the fundamental skills as well as the core values of the game at the grassroots level in an effort to help grow and improve the youth basketball experience for players, coaches and parents. During the 2016-17 season, the NBA reached more than 18 million youth in 53 countries through its youth participation initiatives.
For more information on the Jr. NBA Basketball England League, please visit http://jrnbaleague.uk/.
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