A Hunger for a Better Life May Lead to the N.B.A.

Other Greek stars worked their way up through youth national teams and joined top professional clubs like Panathinaikos and Olympiacos. Adetokunbo, essentially stateless before he received his passport in May, has never played above Greece’s second division. He grew up at a tiny club called Filathlitikos, which took him in six years ago, back when he still shared a bedroom with his three brothers and preferred soccer. He has signed to play in Spain next season, unless an N.B.A. team has differe

Japanese Plant Seeds of Baseball Throughout Africa

There is no grass and no pitcher’s mound. Players wear jeans, sweatpants or shorts. A big tree sits in left-center field and aircraft engines hum beyond the concrete wall in deep center. The soccer game behind home plate sometimes spills over. “I’ve had to teach the basics very slowly,” said Ogawa, a former high school outfielder. “They’re very energetic, but it’s all new for them.” During one informal game, a tall boy in yellow rounded third base, pushed aside his slower teammate and scored a

Vlado Jankovic Is Star for Panionios in Greece

“He was a special man,” said his former teammate P. J. Brown, who played one season for Panionios before a 15-year N.B.A. career, which ended in 2008. “He always kept the team loose, laughing and having fun. He was smart, like a coach on the floor. He didn’t have super explosiveness, but knew how to get to his sweet spots. He had a picture-perfect stroke.” And he was a fierce competitor. In one European tournament, Jankovic scored 41 points in a 97-85 victory over the team known today as Virtus

Virginia Law Phasing Out ‘Fox Pens’ Vexes All Sides

However, some animal rights organizations want changes now, and some vow to shut down the fox pens sooner than the law requires, possibly through the courts. They are targeting other states, as well. “It’s a gentrified version of dog fighting, and it cannot be done humanely,” said Carter Dillard, director of litigation for the Animal Legal Defense Fund, who added that “helpless animals are still likely to be mauled in the state of Virginia.” Mr. Poarch, along with his father and uncle, borrowe

Athletes Struggle in Greece, Birthplace of Olympics

Greece has competed in every Summer Olympics since the modern Games began in 1896, when Athens hosted. Even during the Great Depression, Greece managed to send athletes to Los Angeles in 1932 — the year it defaulted on its external debt. For Winter Games, Greece usually sends a handful of skiers. To build a team for London, the country’s Olympic committee has pursued private-sector sponsors and has increased its dependence on aid from the International Olympic Committee. Now the growing concern

Nick Galis, a Hero of Greek Basketball, Is Honored by Aris

“We had to say sorry to Nick because now he’s 55 years old, and this should have been done many years ago,” said Lefteris Arvanitis, the president of Aris, who took over the team last year. Former teammates and opponents joined 5,500 fans in the Thessaloniki arena to honor Galis, who made a rock star entrance through fog. He delighted them by spinning a basketball on a finger and dribbling through his legs. Nicknamed the Gangster for his no-nonsense style and piercing stare, he warmly hugged hi

American basketball players find their Dream Teams in Africa | Toronto Star

It’s probably their only shot at international glory or the Olympics. Basketball governing body FIBA allows one naturalized citizen per roster. Africa generally exports basketball players to the United States, but a handful of American professionals have gone the other way. The African championship, known as AfroBasket, began its knockout stage Thursday in Tunisia and features several Americans who were granted citizenship to play for African teams. For Moore, representing an African country i

The African basketball championship: Unique and entertaining

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — The African basketball championship may lack star power — even electrical power on occasion. But with national pride at stake, it almost always entertains. AfroBasket, which tipped off Friday in Senegal and Tunisia, can’t be compared to a glitzy event like the NCAA tournament. Senegal’s aging national stadium in the capital Dakar, for example, has no air conditioning. A recent women’s AfroBasket game in Mali was paused because of a power cut. International basketball fede

Security Fears Hang Over African Marathons

DAKAR, Senegal — Samba Faye’s training for Sunday’s inaugural marathon here includes runs along Dakar’s scenic coastal road, where there has been a noticeable increase in armed security at upscale hotels and shopping areas after recent terrorist attacks in Burkina Faso and Mali. But Faye’s concerns are his pace and hydration. He says he is not sweating security. “There won’t be any problems,” said Faye, 29, one of Senegal’s best distance runners, who, like his fellow Muslims, sprinkles hopeful