Boston Celtics big man Al Horford took to Instagram to celebrate the recent refurbishing of a basketball court in La Romana, a coastal city in his native Dominican Republic. In a caption alongside a posted video detailing the project, Horford explained this was part of the NBA’s 75th-anniversary celebration.
The league helped modernize the court and facility at Club Quisqueya, one of 50 such court renovation projects in Latin America and beyond. “I’m so excited for young people in my home country to play the game and make great memories there for years to come.” Horford said in his Instagram post.
Horford is one of ten Dominican players in NBA history, and this spring became the first to compete for an NBA title. His father, Tito Horford, became the first Dominican-born player when he suited up for the Bucks in the ’88-89 season. The younger Horford will reportedly represent his home country in the 2023 FIBA World Cup alongside Karl-Anthony Towns and Chris Duarte.
Horford has long represented his Dominican roots. As a rookie he befriended Boston Red Sox great David Ortiz, also a Dominican national. And as a member of the Boston Celtics, Horford has made deep connections with the city’s large Dominican community.
The new court in La Romana features a stylized center-court image of a player dunking a basketball in traditional Carnival attire, designed by Dominican artist Johann Dovente.
July 12, 2012; Las Vegas, NV, USA; United States forward LeBron James (6) defends against Dominican Republic center Al Horford (10) in the first half at the Thomas and Mack Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Associate Vice President of Marketing for NBA Latin America Emilio Garcia Duarte spoke about the project at its unveiling a few weeks ago.
Said Garcia Duarte, “projects like this contribute to the growth of the NBA in the region and bring value to the communities by improving their sports infrastructure and promoting the practice of basketball in La Romana”
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Story originally appeared on Celtics Wire