We’re just two months away from the 2015 National Basketball Association draft and already history is being made, particularly where the Sacramento Kings are concerned.
Canada-born Sim Bhullar made history this month when he made his debut for the Sacramento Kings, making him the first player of Indian heritage to play in the NBA.
22-year-old Bhullar was called on to play in the final 16 seconds of the Kings’ game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, in which they took a 116-111 victory. He said of his debut: “It was a great feeling and I’m happy to kind of be an ambassador.
“Hopefully more kids growing up will see there’s a player of Indian descent on the court and we can get a couple more Indian NBA players.”
Bhullar signed a 10-day contract with the Sacramento Kings on 2nd April, and has said he would like to grow the game in India. The 7ft 5in star was born to parents of Punjab descent, who later migrated to Canada. His father, Avtar, had grown up playing kabaddi, a traditional contact sport, but had had no previous exposure to basketball. Contrastingly, Bhullar’s younger brother, Tanveer, plays college basketball for New Mexico State.
The debut will surely bring about a positive future for the Sacramento Kings, as well as a whole host of industries related to the sport. Footielive, for example, is keeping a strong eye on the NBA covering all the news involved, even offering NBA specials bets, which currently cover a variety of individual stars including Kobe Bryant. It is only a matter of time before Sim Bhulla’s personal achievements make it onto the list of offers available such as these.
What’s more, the news will be a welcome change for the Sacramento Kings, who are still suffering from the bad press of Carl Landry’s suspension. The 31-year-old power forward is serving a one-game suspension this month after he was seen leaving the bench are during an altercation. He will not be paid during this suspension period.
Aside from his debut as the first player of Indian descent, Bhulla’s long awaited game with the Kings was also a challenge for personal reasons. It transpired that, despite only playing for the final 16 seconds, he was up against two of his childhood friends, Anthony Bennett and Andrew Wiggins, with whom he played at AAU.
He said: “Andrew used to sleep over at my house all the time. We’re pretty much like one big family.”