HomeAustralia and New ZealandNBL Announces Carmelo Anthony As Next Stars Ambassador And Future Team Owner

NBL Announces Carmelo Anthony As Next Stars Ambassador And Future Team Owner

NBL Announces Carmelo Anthony As Next Stars Ambassador And Future Team Owner

Australia’s NBL has proudly unveiled NBA legend Carmelo Anthony as the Global Ambassador for its cutting-edge Next Stars program.

This prestigious role sees Anthony not only endorsing the program but also becoming a part of the ownership group of a forthcoming NBL expansion team, expanding his list of career achievements both on and off the court. Recently, the NBL also appointed sports commentator and two-time NBA champion Kenny Smith as the Head of Next Stars Player Initiatives in North America.

Introduced in the 2018-19 season, the Next Stars initiative has swiftly emerged as a top-tier platform for draft-eligible talents worldwide to accelerate their on-court progress towards NBA aspirations. With eight Next Stars successfully drafted into the NBA since its inception, including prominent names like LaMelo Ball, RJ Hampton, Josh Giddey, and Ousmane Dieng, the program stands as a proven success.

The 2023-24 Next Stars class marked a milestone for the NBL with eight players hailing from Australia, Lithuania, Germany, Sweden, France, and the United States. Among them, six players are currently gearing up for the upcoming NBA Draft, with French talent Alexandre Sarr from the Perth Wildcats anticipated to be a Top 3 pick.

Expressing his enthusiasm about joining the NBL, Anthony shared, “In joining the NBL, I’m excited for the opportunity to not just elevate basketball in Australia but to impact the global landscape of the sport.” He commended the NBL’s commitment to nurturing talent through programs like Next Stars that cultivate elite players, expressing eagerness to contribute to the future of basketball on a global scale.

Tasked with attracting and mentoring top-tier players globally, Anthony aims to elevate the Next Stars program to new heights. With his vast experience as a sports icon and entrepreneur, Anthony brings unmatched expertise to the NBL, promising to propel the league into uncharted territories.

A celebrated player known for his scoring prowess, Anthony has left an indelible mark on the NBA during his illustrious 19-season career with teams like the Denver Nuggets, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Portland Trail Blazers, and Los Angeles Lakers. His impressive list of accolades includes 10 NBA All-Star appearances, a stint as the NBA scoring leader in 2013, and multiple All-NBA Team selections.

Highlighting the significance of the partnership, NBL Director and Board Member Nikola Milivojevic emphasised, “As a master of his craft and legend of the game, Carmelo is the ideal mentor for our Next Stars, and the perfect partner for the NBL.” He expressed confidence in Anthony’s influence in propelling the Next Stars program to greater heights and expanding the league’s reach globally.

Larry Kestelman, Owner and Executive Chairman of the NBL, expressed tremendous pride in Anthony’s association with the league, citing it as a powerful endorsement of the NBL’s progress over the last decade. He underlined the importance of Anthony’s role in promoting the Next Stars program, attracting top talents, and envisaged his involvement as a future team owner as a strategic move to enhance both the league’s credibility and global exposure. Kestelman hailed Anthony’s addition as a significant step towards solidifying the NBL’s standing as a global basketball powerhouse and the premier pathway to the NBA.

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