Last month, Miami Heat player Chris Bosh traveled to India. Wearing a "Namaste Bosh" ("Welcome Bosh") T-shirt, he hung out with children in Mumbai, teaching them dribbling and leading cheers. But this was no humanitarian trip in the wake of the Heat's second championship in as many years: It's part of a well-orchestrated effort by the National Basketball Association to make an all-American game hugely popular in India.
In the past seven years, 22 NBA and WNBA players have traveled to India, including Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard. In 2011, the NBA opened its first office in India, and appointed Yannick Colaco to head it up. In April, the big cheese himself— NBA Commissioner David Stern—went to Mumbai to launch an "NBA Cares" program to introduce the sport to youth.
Why is India a priority for the league? The hope is to create more Chinas. According to Heidi Ueberroth, NBA president-international, the league has been developing the game there for 30 years, and China is now the NBA's largest market outside the U.S.
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