10 Places Around The World That Are Crazy About Basketball

All over the world, Basketball is being played in places you might not expect. Next time you think of hating on LeBron, consider rooting for some of these international teams. See how else people around the world #RiseAbove on Jordan’s official gallery. posted on

1. Philippines

The Philippines are serious about the game of Basketball, whether in the street or in the stadium - they’ve been known to often carry on playing ball come rain or shine. Kevin Durant himself even took note of the matter on his facebook page, posting an amazing photo of children playing in a flooded street.

2. China

China has a long history with Basketball, with the game arriving in the country via the YMCA as early as the late 1800’s. Nowadays, the game is played in every corner of the country, from street courts in the remote village of Leishan to professional arenas where pros hone their amazing skills in preparation for world competitions like the upcoming Olympic Games.

3. Republic of Palau

With its remote location (somewhere in the Pacific Ocean) and small population (just under 21,000) the Republic of Palau might pass unnoticed by most. The Palau national basketball team competed regularly in the Olympics until 2004, and Basketball courts have been installed throughout the Island for school children to play on.

4. Mongolia

The Mongolian National Basketball team only joined the International Basketball Federation in the year 2000, but the rest of the country’s passion for the sport is nothing new. Stand-alone baskets can be found scattered throughout the country’s amazing landscapes.

5. Angola

Angola ranks 13th worldwide and is currently the top African nation in the game. Its national team has won the Gold in the FIBA Africa Championship 5 times in the last 10 years alone.

6. Syria

Basketball is the second-most popular sport in Syria, topped only by Soccer. Notable ball players in the country include Ex-Dallas Maverick Samaki Walker and the tall fellow in the picture above, Abd Al Wahab Al Hamowi, who atop his 7 feet 6 inches is considered the tallest man in Syria.

7. Lithuania

Lithuanian sports fans are absolutely bananas about Basketball, and with reason: their men’s team currently ranks at #5 in the world and they have won dozens of medals, Olympic or otherwise, in the century.

8. Guatemala

Though Guatemala’s National Basketball team doesn’t rank very high worldwide, the game is enjoyed enthusiastically by players young and old, sometimes at night to avoid the high daytime temperatures.

9. Latvia

Latvia’s men’s basketball team certainly does not rank as high as the country’s women’s basketball team, but that hasn’t kept their (really cute) fans from coming out in droves to enjoy the game.

10. Malaysia

Basketball is a big part of Malaysian culture, especially in the country’s Universities where the sport is played both indoors or outdoors.

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