Could NBA players join Saudi Arabia’s basketball league?

Could NBA players join Saudi Arabia’s basketball league?



Draymond Green, Giannis Antetokounmpo and LeBron James shared their interest.

Saudi Arabia is fast becoming an international sporting destination. The Kingdom has hosted prestigious events, from Saudi Arabian Grand Prix to the Rage on the Red Sea boxing match. As high-profile footballers have been signed by the country, NBA players have shared their thoughts on making the move.  

Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo shared on Twitter: “Al-Hilal, you can take me”. PSG footballer Kylian Mbappe responded to the post with the tears of joy emoji.

Following the post, Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James and Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green declared their interest. James shared: “Me headed to Saudi when they call @RichPaul4 and @mavcarter for that 1-year deal”. The post included an image of Forest Gump running into the distance. Green added: “They got basketball leagues too right? I don’t [think] the ink on my contract has dried up yet”.

The Kingdom has its own Saudi Basketball League. Established in 1976, it is a 12-member organisation backed by the Public Investment Fund. In 2018, Saudi Arabia’s men’s team won the Arab National Championship. In 2023, the country participated in the GCC U-16 Basketball Championships and won a silver medal.

In the last year, Saudi Arabia has made offers to legendary football players. Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema made the jump to the country. Liverpool’s Fabinho is joining Al-Ittihad, and Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson has signed with Al-Ettifaq. Plus, PSG’s Kylian Mbappe has reportedly received a SAR 1.2 billion offer from a Saudi Pro League club, which rivals any transfer in the history of football.

Would you like to see NBA players in Saudi Arabia?