NBA rosters feature 120 International players from 40 countries and six continents

Josh Giddey, Dyson Daniels (NBA All-Star Weekend)

NEW YORK — The National Basketball Association (NBA) announced that 120 international players from 40 countries and six continents are on opening-night rosters for the 2022-23 season, including a record number of players from Canada (22) and Australia (10).

A record-tying five players from Nigeria are among the 16 African players on opening-night rosters. There are also more than 35 players with at least one parent from Africa. 

This marks the first time that opening-night rosters have at least 120 international players in consecutive seasons and the ninth straight season that opening-night rosters feature at least 100 international players. All 30 NBA teams feature at least one international player.

For the ninth consecutive year, Canada is the most-represented country outside of the U.S., followed by Australia, France (nine players) and Germany (six players). Nigeria, Serbia and Spain each have five players. There is a total of 58 European players on opening-night rosters, including three members of the 2021-22 Kia All-NBA First Team: Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks; Greece; ties to Nigeria), Luka Dončić (Dallas Mavericks; Slovenia) and 2021-22 Kia NBA Most Valuable Player Nikola Jokić (Denver Nuggets; Serbia).

The Toronto Raptors feature eight international players, marking the second consecutive season the Raptors lead the league, followed by the Mavericks, Indiana Pacers and the Sacramento Kings with seven international players each. The Oklahoma City Thunder and Utah Jazz each have six.

Thirty-eight players on opening-night rosters participated in Basketball Without Borders (BWB) prior to their NBA careers, including Deandre Ayton (Suns; Bahamas; BWB Global 2016), Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (Thunder; Canada; BWB Global 2016), Joel Embiid (76ers; Cameroon; BWB Africa 2011), Rui Hachimura (Washington Wizards; Japan; BWB Global 2016), Jamal Murray (Nuggets; Canada; BWB Global 2015), Pascal Siakam (Raptors; Cameroon; BWB Africa 2012) and Jonas Valančiūnas (New Orleans Pelicans; Lithuania; BWB Europe 2008). Additionally, there are a record three NBA Academy graduates on opening-night rosters: Dyson Daniels (Pelicans; Australia; NBA Global Academy), Josh Giddey (Thunder; Australia; NBA Global Academy) and Bennedict Mathurin (Pacers; Canada; ties to Haiti; NBA Academy Latin America). NBA Academies, a year-round elite basketball development program for top high school-age athletes from outside the U.S., have been launched in Canberra, Australia; Greater Noida, India; San Luis Potosí, Mexico; and Saly, Senegal for top prospects from their respective countries and continents.

There are also a number of American players with ties to other countries. Among the American players with ties to other countries are Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat; ties to Nigeria), Jalen Green (Houston Rockets; ties to the Philippines), Matisse Thybulle (76ers; ties to Australia and Haiti), Juan Toscano-Anderson (Lakers; ties to Mexico), Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota Timberwolves; ties to the Dominican Republic) and Jaylin Williams (Thunder; ties to Vietnam).

The NBA today announced that 120 international players from 40 countries are on opening-night rosters for the 2022-23 season.

This marks the first time that opening-night rosters have at least 120 international players in consecutive seasons.

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— NBA Communications (@NBAPR) October 18, 2022

Some key international player milestones and storylines for 2022-23:

– Two international players have won the last four Kia NBA Most Valuable Player Awards: reigning back-to-back MVP Jokić (2021-22 and 2020-21) and Antetokounmpo (2019-20 and 2018-19). Jokić and the Nuggets will face Antetokounmpo and the Bucks on Wednesday, Jan. 25 in Milwaukee and on Saturday, March 25 in Denver.

– Last season was the first time the top three finishers in MVP voting were all international players: Jokić, Embiid and Antetokounmpo.

– At least five international players have made the Kia All-NBA Team each season since 2018-19.

– As part of the 2022-23 NBA App GM Survey, Dončić, Antetokounmpo and Embiid were voted the No. 1, 2 and 3 players most likely to win the 2022-23 Kia NBA MVP Award (48%, 34% and 13% of votes, respectively). Antetokounmpo and Dončić were voted the No. 1 and No. 2 players with whom general managers would most want to start a franchise (55% and 45% of votes, respectively).

– Daniels and Mathurin are poised to become the second and third NBA Academy graduates to play in the NBA after Giddey became the first last season. Daniels and Giddey, former teammates at NBA Global Academy in Australia, will meet on Monday, Nov. 28 in New Orleans, Friday, Dec. 23 and Monday, Feb. 13 in Oklahoma City, and Saturday, March 11 in New Orleans.

– Matchups between Philadelphia and Toronto will feature three former BWB Africa campers from Cameroon: Embiid, Siakam and Christian Koloko (Raptors; BWB Africa 2017; BWB Global 2018). The teams will play each other on Wednesday, Oct. 26 and Friday, Oct. 28 in Toronto, and on Monday, Dec. 19 and Friday, March 31 in Philadelphia.

– There are three sets of international brothers in the NBA: Giannis, Thanasis and Kostas Antetokounmpo (Greece; ties to Nigeria; Bucks, Bucks and Chicago Bulls, respectively); Juancho and Willy Hernangómez (Spain; Raptors and Pelicans, respectively); and Franz and Moritz Wagner (Germany; Magic).

– There are 14 international players on opening-night rosters who have been NBA All-Stars: Antetokounmpo, Dončić, Goran Dragić (Bulls; Slovenia), Embiid, Rudy Gobert (Timberwolves; France), Al Horford (Celtics; Dominican Republic), Kyrie Irving (Brooklyn Nets; Australia), Jokić, Kristaps Porzingis (Wizards; Latvia), Domantas Sabonis (Kings; Lithuania), Siakam, Ben Simmons (Nets; Australia), Nikola Vučević (Bulls; Montenegro) and Andrew Wiggins (Warriors; Canada).

Luka Doncic, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Nikola Jokic

Below please find the full list of international players on 2022-23 opening-night rosters (active and inactive):

International players on opening night rosters

AngolaBruno FernandoHouston Rockets 
ArgentinaFacundo Campazzo**Dallas Mavericks 
ArgentinaLeandro Bolmaro**Utah Jazz 
AustraliaBen SimmonsBrooklyn Nets 
AustraliaKyrie IrvingBrooklyn Nets 
AustraliaPatty MillsBrooklyn Nets 
AustraliaJosh Green**Dallas Mavericks 
AustraliaJack White*Denver Nuggets 
AustraliaJoe InglesMilwaukee Bucks 
AustraliaDyson Daniels^New Orleans Pelicans 
AustraliaJosh Giddey^**Oklahoma City Thunder 
AustraliaJock LandalePhoenix Suns 
AustraliaMatthew DellavedovaSacramento Kings 
AustriaJakob PoeltlSan Antonio Spurs 
BahamasKai Jones**Charlotte Hornets 
BahamasBuddy HieldIndiana Pacers 
BahamasDeandre Ayton**Phoenix SunsTies to Nigeria
Bosnia & HerzegovinaJusuf NurkićPortland Trail Blazers 
BrazilRaul NetoCleveland Cavaliers 
CameroonJoel Embiid**Philadelphia 76ers 
CameroonChristian Koloko**Toronto Raptors 
CameroonPascal SiakamToronto Raptors 
CanadaMfiondu Kabengele*Boston CelticsTies to the Democratic Republic of the Congo
CanadaDwight PowellDallas Mavericks 
CanadaJamal Murray**Denver Nuggets 
CanadaCory JosephDetroit PistonsTies to Trinidad and Tobago
CanadaAndrew WigginsGolden State Warriors 
CanadaAndrew Nembhard**Indiana Pacers 
CanadaBennedict Mathurin^**Indiana PacersTies to Haiti
CanadaOshae BrissettIndiana Pacers 
CanadaBrandon ClarkeMemphis Grizzlies 
CanadaDillon BrooksMemphis Grizzlies 
CanadaRJ Barrett**New York Knicks 
CanadaLuguentz Dort**Oklahoma City Thunder 
CanadaCaleb HoustanOrlando Magic 
CanadaShaedon SharpePortland Trail Blazers 
CanadaTrey LylesSacramento Kings 
CanadaJosh Primo**San Antonio Spurs 
CanadaDalano BantonToronto Raptors 
CanadaKhem BirchToronto Raptors 
CanadaKelly Olynyk**Utah Jazz 
CanadaNickeil Alexander-WalkerUtah Jazz 
CanadaShai Gilgeous-Alexander**Oklahoma City Thunder 
CanadaEugene Omoruyi*Oklahoma City ThunderTies to Nigeria
CroatiaBojan BogdanovićDetroit Pistons 
CroatiaIvica ZubacLA Clippers 
CroatiaDario Šarić**Phoenix Suns 
Czech RepublicVít Krejčí**Atlanta Hawks 
Democratic Republic of the CongoJonathan KumingaGolden State Warriors 
Democratic Republic of the CongoBismack BiyomboPhoenix Suns 
Dominican RepublicAl HorfordBoston Celtics 
Dominican RepublicChris DuarteIndiana Pacers 
FinlandLauri Markkanen**Utah Jazz 
FranceThéo Maledon*Charlotte Hornets 
FranceFrank Ntilikina**Dallas MavericksTies to Belgium and Rwanda
FranceKillian Hayes**Detroit Pistons 
FranceMoussa Diabate***LA ClippersTies to Guinea and Mali
FranceNicolas Batum**LA ClippersTies to Cameroon
FranceRudy GobertMinnesota Timberwolves 
FranceEvan FournierNew York KnicksTies to Algeria
FranceOusmane DiengOklahoma City ThunderTies to Senegal
FranceOlivier Sarr*Portland Trail BlazersTies to Senegal
GeorgiaGoga Bitadze**Indiana Pacers 
GeorgiaSandro Mamukelashvili***Milwaukee Bucks 
GermanyMaxi KleberDallas Mavericks 
GermanyDaniel TheisIndiana Pacers 
GermanyDennis SchröderLos Angeles LakersTies to The Gambia
GermanyIsaiah Hartenstein**New York Knicks 
GermanyFranz WagnerOrlando Magic 
GermanyMoritz WagnerOrlando Magic 
GreeceKostas Antetokounmpo***Chicago BullsTies to Nigeria
GreeceGiannis AntetokounmpoMilwaukee BucksTies to Nigeria
GreeceThanasis AntetokounmpoMilwaukee BucksTies to Nigeria
GuineaMamadi Diakite*Cleveland Cavaliers 
IsraelDeni Avdija**Washington Wizards 
ItalyDanilo Gallinari**Boston Celtics 
ItalySimone Fontecchio**Utah Jazz 
JamaicaNick RichardsCharlotte Hornets 
JapanYuta WatanabeBrooklyn Nets 
JapanRui Hachimura**Washington WizardsTies to Benin
LatviaDāvis BertānsDallas Mavericks 
LatviaKristaps PorziņģisWashington Wizards 
MontenegroMarko SimonovićChicago Bulls 
MontenegroNikola VučevićChicago Bulls 
New ZealandSteven AdamsMemphis Grizzlies 
NigeriaJosh OkogiePhoenix Suns 
NigeriaPrecious AchiuwaToronto Raptors 
NigeriaUdoka AzubuikeUtah Jazz 
NigeriaChima MonekeSacramento Kings 
NigeriaChimezie MetuSacramento Kings 
PortugalNeemias Queta*Sacramento Kings 
Republic of the CongoSerge IbakaMilwaukee BucksTies to Spain
SenegalGorgui Dieng**San Antonio Spurs 
SerbiaBogdan BogdanovićAtlanta Hawks 
SerbiaNikola JokićDenver Nuggets 
SerbiaBoban MarjanovićHouston Rockets 
SerbiaNikola JovićMiami Heat 
SerbiaAleksej Pokuševski**Oklahoma City Thunder 
SloveniaVlatko ČančarDenver Nuggets 
SloveniaLuka DoncicDallas Mavericks 
South SudanWenyen GabrielLos Angeles Lakers 
SpainRicky RubioCleveland Cavaliers 
SpainUsman GarubaHouston RocketsTies to Nigeria
SpainSanti Aldama**Memphis Grizzlies 
SpainWilly Hernangómez**New Orleans Pelicans 
SpainJuancho HernangómezToronto Raptors 
St. LuciaChris BoucherToronto RaptorsTies to Canada
SudanBol BolOrlando Magic 
SwitzerlandClint CapelaAtlanta HawksTies to Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo
TurkeyAlperen SengunHouston Rockets 
TurkeyÖmer Yurtseven**Miami Heat 
TurkeyFurkan KorkmazPhiladelphia 76ers 
UkraineSvi MykhailiukNew York Knicks 
UkraineAlex LenSacramento Kings 
United KingdomJeremy SochanSan Antonio SpursTies to Poland
United KingdomO.G. AnunobyToronto RaptorsTies to Nigeria

* – Two-Way Player
** – Former Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Camper
*** – Both Two-Way Player and Former BWB Camper
^ – NBA Academy Graduate

Dave Gallo

Dave Gallo is a pioneering sports analytics expert, renowned for his revolutionary work in AI-driven sports simulations, projections, and advanced statistical analysis. With a profound passion for sports and technology, he crafts cutting-edge computer models that accurately predict outcomes. Dave's game-changing insights have reshaped strategy, player evaluation, and decision-making across various sports. His dynamic presentations make complex analytics accessible and inspiring, ensuring his legacy as a visionary in sports analytics. Check out Dave's Pick Record.

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