As a rule, basketball fans closely follow tournaments and teams that are played in other countries, as well as Italy. Among the best known international basketball players there is definitely the NBA (National Basketball Association), the most exclusive basketball league in Canada and North America. The NBA has 30 teams, 29 of them in the United States and one in Canada. The structure of the matches of this league predicts a first stage of the regular season followed by the famous playoffs, at the end of which the title of the winning team is awarded.
Playing in the NBA is the dream of basketball players all over the world, due to the high level of professionalism that this league defines. Basketball fans around the world also watch the NBA, who not only watch the games but love to bet on the results. The Legal Switzerland Online Casinos It is among the most widely used platforms in this regard, as it gives the opportunity to bets of different types and, often, also to follow the events in live broadcasts.
Sport is a source of pride and love for Italians
Italians are always happy to see their countrymen’s names pop up among NBA basketball players. Perhaps we can say that sport is exactly the sector that manages to bring everyone together, highlighting that patriotic spirit that in recent years seems to have been lost between the sometimes heated debates and the very different viewpoints.
In fact, there is one thing that all basketball players who joined the NBA have in common: the fact that they started as a kid, perhaps in the backyard or school, aspiring to great results but perhaps without even thinking about the idea of entering the most important basketball league in the world.
So who are the Italian players who had the honor to join This is a very prestigious league? Let’s take a look to find out.
From Italy to the United States, between prevarication and retreat
Let’s see what are some of the names that gave our country a place in the sports field:
- Danilo Gallinari is a player originally from Sant’Angelo Ludigiano, in the province of Lodi. Born in 1988, he played for 4 years at a professional level in Italy, then joined the Boston Celtics, the team with the most wins so far;
- Born in 1986, Marco Bellinelli played for several teams in the NBA, starting with the Saint Antonio Spurs. Today his current team is the Golden State Warriors, the team that has won the NBA Championship 7 times. In addition to being the NBA Champion in 2014, he won the Three Point Shootout (the pre-All Star Game event), that same year as well;
- Andrea Bargnani, born in 1985, held the role of basketball player in the position of the great winger or center. In the NBA he played for the Toronto Raptors and was the first player of European descent to be selected as the first overall pick in the NBA draft. Also for this reason, he was given the nickname Il Mago;
- Niccolo Meli, born in 1991, is an Italian-American player who played in the NBA until 2021 for two teams: the New Orleans Pelicans and the Dallas Mavericks. Today he is the captain of Olympia Milan.
- Coming from Siena, Nico Manion is an Italian-American player who has been selected by the Golden State Warriors. Born in 2001, he has been one of the most promising players in international basketball since the beginning.
- Simone Fontecchio, born in 1995, who plays the junior striker on the NBA’s Utah Jazz and, at the same time, on the Italian national basketball team. He joined the NBA in 2022, and has experience on several international teams, as well as Italian Olympia Milano.
- Alex Acker is an Italian-American basketball player who entered the NBA in two different phases: the 2005-06 season and 2008-2009 season. The two teams he has had the chance to play with are the Detroit Pistons and the Los Angeles Clippers. So far he can play in the Italian Serie A but only in the case of society, because his naturalization is due to his marriage to a girl from Kanto.
The importance of joining the NBA comes not only from the prestige it brings, but also from the economic returns, especially for the teams that win the championship. We often wonder how much a team that wins in the NBA earns: $15 million is the prize pool for the winner. A number that certainly pays off the many sacrifices to reach the finish line.
As for individual player compensation, we know that 2023 will also be a very positive year for players in this league. The highest salary was set at over $47 million for Russell Westbrook, a basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers.