Sixers star Joel Embiid will travel to Senegal later this month to serve as a coach in the NBA’s Basketball Without Borders program, which will be held at two cities in the West African nation from July 28-31.
The NBA, global basketball governing body FIBA, and sponsor Nike will host 60 boys and girls ages 17 and under in Saly and Dakar for a series of basketball and life skills training activities.
Embiid is one of 11 current or former NBA players who will serve as coaches in the program. Others include Chris Bosh, Malcolm Brogdon, Ed Davis along with a number of NBA veterans who are, like the Cameroon-born Embiid, Africa natives. The most prominent names are Luol Deng (South Sudan), Luc Mbah a Moute (Cameroon), Tacko Fall (Senegal) and legend Dikembe Mutombo (Democratic Republic of the Congo).
A number of NBA coaches are also part of the program, including Kenny Atkinson, Doc Rivers and David Fizdale. Front office personnel making the trip include 76ers general manager Elton Brand and Nigeria-born Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri, who has had a big role in Basketball Without Borders for years.
The Sixers will also be represented by technical scout Ruben Boumtje Boumtje, a Cameroon native who played at Georgetown and for a few years with the Portland Trail Blazers in the early 2000s. He went on to play in Europe for a while, then came back to America to work in non-basketball pursuits before joining the Sixers last summer.
In addition to the formal program, the NBA will help dedicate two new basketball courts in Dakar and participate in other community service activities.