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London-born NBA star OG Anunoby wants to inspire British basketball players

PUBLISHED: 12:00 22 November 2017

Toronto Raptors  OG Anunoby handles the ball against the Washington Wizards (Pic: Ron Turenne/NBAE via Getty Images)

Toronto Raptors OG Anunoby handles the ball against the Washington Wizards (Pic: Ron Turenne/NBAE via Getty Images)

2017 NBAE

Boyhood Arsenal fan and NBA star OG Anunoby wants to inspire the next generation of young Great British basketball players.

The 20-year-old, who was born in Harlesden in Brent, spoke about his start to life at Toronto Raptors and his upbringing in the capital.

Anunoby was selected 23rd overall in the 2017 NBA draft and has already made his way into the starting line-up at Toronto, averaging 17 minutes a game with 5.8 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.3 assists on a nightly basis.

“Yes that’s definitely a goal of mine, to inspire kids in Great Britain to want to play basketball and show that they can make it to the NBA from Britain,” he said.

The youngster revealed he doesn’t remember much about growing up in the capital, but does remember supporting Arsenal and playing lots of football.

“I don’t remember too much as I was pretty young, I remember it raining a lot! My family is still there now so I’m going to go back next summer as I haven’t been in a while,” he added.

“My dad’s an Arsenal fan, I liked Arsenal a lot growing up too, but right now I like Manchester United.

“I was born in north west London in Harlesden, I did play [football] and when I moved to the US I was still playing, but I stopped around year eight but then I focused on basketball a bit more and I grew.”

The rising star also revealed he would consider playing for Great Britain in future and his goal of being a complete player.

“It’s definitely something I’d consider, I haven’t decided yet, but it’s something I would consider,” he said.

“That’s a goal of mine and being a complete player every game and doing it at both ends of the court.”

Anunoby also spoke of how he got into the sport after being undecided as to which sport he liked best for years.

“At elementary school I played every sport and then I started to like basketball more, but I had phases with every sport where I wanted to play professionally – baseball, basketball and football,” he said.

“But in middle school when I started to grow and I got better, I knew I wanted to play basketball.”

Fans in the UK can watch the NBA live on BT Sport and NBA League Pass. NBA Sundays games LIVE in Primetime in the UK every Sunday at 8:30pm. This week on November 26 the Minnesota Timberwolves will host the Phoenix Suns on BT Sport 2.

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