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Monday, February 8, 2016

Chinese Only Please - NACBA

For all you Chinese basketball players, there are tournaments out there just for you! Most urban city Chinatowns hold local Chinese tournaments and leagues throughout the year but the main event and certainly the most prestigious of Chinese basketball tournaments is the NACBA Invitational Tournament held every year during Memorial Day Weekend. The first invitational tournament was started in Chicago in 1981 and has been hosted annually all over North America (Toronto, Boston, San Francisco, Montreal, Los Angeles, New York, Las Vegas, Arizona, Washington DC, Philadelphia) with the requirement that all players must be 1/4 Chinese (at least on grandparent must be Chinese).

So why a Chinese-only basketball tournament? Is it because we can't hang with the best non-Chinese ballers? Some may think so but I personally do not. Having seen the high caliber play of some of these tournament players, in addition to the increasing number of Chinese players entering the NBA (Yao Ming, Wang Zhi Zhi, Mengke Bateer and Yi Jian Lian), it is safe to say, we can play with the best. I think this tournament started because a bunch of Chinese guys in Chicago really liked basketball and was tired of playing the same local Chinese teams. Chinese people love to compete against other Chinese. To this day, I think the main appeal for this tournament, in addition to bragging rites for being the best Chinese basketball team in North America and fostering unity among Chinese basketball enthusiasts, is the chance to go up against top notch Chinese players that you would never have the chance to play with otherwise. For more information, visit the NACBA website.

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