It’s not a secret that the NBA is conformed 90% by American players. They have the biggest exposure since their high school days and the NCAA system allows them to be right here in the eyes of scouts.
However, there have been multiple foreign legends of the game who paved the way for many more to come. Dirk Nowitzki, Pau Gasol, and Tony Parker are just a few of the names that come to mind.
Then again, there have been several other players that even played for Team USA despite not being born in America, or that spent most of their lives in the U.S but weren’t born on American soil. That’s why today, we’re going to let you know about 5 NBA players you may have not known that were born overseas.
Clint Capela has made a name for himself for his rim-running, rim-protection, and rebounding skills. Originally drafted by the Houston Rockets, he’s now one of the biggest factors for the Atlanta Hawks.
What most people don’t know is that the big man wasn’t actually born in the United States. In fact, he didn’t even attend college, as he was born and raised in Switzerland. He’s the highest-earning team athlete in his nation’s history.
A couple of years ago, it seemed like Reggie Jackson was poised to break out and become one of the best scoring guards in the league. Those days have passed but he’s still having a big role off the bench for the Los Angeles Clippers.
With that name, you’d assume that he was born in the United States, but that’s not true. He was actually born in Pordenone, Italy, as his fathers were American soldiers deployed on Italian soil when he was born.
Most people consider Patrick Ewing as the greatest player in New York Knicks history and I won’t be the one to disagree. He was one of the most dominant rebounders and post scorers of his time, even representing Team USA.
But, crazy as it may seem, Ewing wasn’t even an American, at least not from the States. The legend out of Georgetown was actually born in Jamaica, and his son used to play for the Jamaican national team.
Wait, what? How come Steve Kerr isn’t American? With that name, and having attended an NCAA program, how on earth the legendary three-point shooter, 8-time NBA Champion wasn’t born on U.S soil?
Well, believe it or not, Steve Kerr was actually born in Lebanon, where his father was a college teacher. Sadly, he was assassinated by extremists while Steve was back home in the United States.
And last, but not least, we find perhaps the most surprising player on this list. Yes, believe it or not, Kyrie Irving wasn’t born in the United States. As a matter of fact, he was born in Melbourne, Australia.
Irving became infamous for his thoughts on the earth being flat, but he should know better, as he had to make a huge trip when he was a kid. He’s played for the United States and was even named MVP of the FIBA World Cup in 2014.