Abdel Nader on playing in the NBA and basketball in Egypt
Abdel Nader was added to the Celtics roster ahead of the 2017/2018 season opener after being named NBA-G league Rookie of the Year for the 2016/2017 season.
Ahead of the NBA London 2018 game against the 76ers, Nader spoke to NBA about playing the USA and basketball in Egypt.
As one of the first Egyptian players in the NBA, Nader believes that he can help Egypt embrace the sport more.
“I think it is getting there. I know the national team has gotten better over the last couple of years. It still has a long way to go. I think I can really help it with that, by being one of the first Egyptian basketball players to be in the NBA. Hopefully I can influence more kids to pick up the game of basketball,” Nader revealed on the Egyptian Basketball National Team.
The Alexandria-born small forward revealed his desire to inspire youngsters in Egypt to play basketball.
“I was thinking about going back this summer to open up some camps, doing some basketball camps there [in Egypt] and seeing how that goes. It would be great to stay tied up with the community there and seeing how that works out. I’ll gladly do whatever I can to help for any reasons. I haven’t really looked into that yet, though,” Abdel Nader expressed.
“If I could influence a kid to improve his life with basketball and get him to the United States, to make it a better life for himself, I am all for that,” he answered in response to how he could inspire more players from Egypt to come play in the USA.
Nader also expressed his delight in having support from Egypt and the social media response to him playing in the NBA.
“The way social media is now these days, it is really easy to communicate to people of different regions and different parts of the country, world. A lot of people reach out through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. It is a special kind of feeling to know that I have support around the world like that,” Nader reflected.
“For the most part, the whole organization does a great job, from the staff to the players. Al Horford is really influential to all the young players. Kyrie is on us all the time about getting better, being professional, things like that. Jaylen, even though he has only been here a year, has been a great mentor for me. He’s been through it. He knows what to expect, things like that. It is a blessed situation. I am glad to be here,” Abdel Nader pointed out.
Lastly, Nader revealed the players he looks up to as role models and watched growing up.
“Even though I was not in his era, I was a big Michael Jordan guy. I watched film on Michael Jordan. Even though they were not live games, I watched a lot of film on Michael Jordan – ESPN Classic games. Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, guys like that that fit like my type of body, the way I would kind of play in the NBA,” Nader concluded.
Celtics will host the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night in their home opener without the injured Gordon Hayward who was injured in the first quarter against the Cavaliers.
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