NBA All-Star Weekend Awe, and Afrobeats
Written by RasMahddy on February 19, 2023
NBA All-Star weekend from Salt Lake City Utah was the most exciting it’s been in years. From the celebrity all-star game Friday night, to the All-Star game itself the weekend was amazing. The 3-point contest was very historic with Damian Lillard taking the trophy was well deserved. It was truly amazing watching Mac Mclung fly through the air to take home the Slam Dunk Contest Trophy! He showed us all that white men can jump.
With all the historic basketball moments it was the halftime show that was a real highlight for those of us who love Afrobeat music. The All-Star game halftime show took the fans on a journey through Africa featuring a taste of the hottest Afrobeats artists in the industry. Burna Boy kicked it off blazing a few hits from his catalog, but it was Last, Last that really had the crowd locked in. Rema got everyone familiar with his big tune Calm Down. In his performance it seemed as if he was very excited to be on such a huge platform. Very entertaining performance from the young man. The melodic voice of the Nigerian empress Tems took over. Her latest track Free Mind she performed live and it was hypnotic. The crowd was in a trance until Burna Boy returned to the stage to blaze it down.
All the artist performed live with one of the baddest bands I’ve ever seen blaze the place like they did. If the world didn’t know Afrobeats bet they know now! I know it wasn’t the Super Bowl halftime production, but that was surely one to talk about.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Joel Embiid, Pascal Siakam, and Bam Adebayo are all African NBA All-Stars in attendance. There are at least 55 players currently in the NBA who were either born in Africa or have a parent from there. With that said I can see why it was suitable to give the halftime show some Afrobeat flavor. At one point Giannis, Pascal, and Bam were spotted enjoying the party atmosphere.
In May of 2021 the NBA announced the formation of NBA Africa; with 5 former players investing. At least five former NBA players have invested in the business: Junior Bridgeman, Grant Hill, Joakim Noah, Dikembe Mutombo, a native of the Congo, and Luol Deng, a native of South Sudan. The board of directors will include NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum.