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MELBOURNE， May 3 (Xinhua) -- Some of the National Basketball Association' s (NBA) biggest stars will journey to Australia this off-season to impart their skills on the nation' s next batch of promising players.
The NBA， International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and Australia' s National Basketball League (NBL) announced on Tuesday that the NBA's illustrious Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Asia program would stop in Melbourne for a four-day camp in June.
Australia' s top basketball prospects born in 1999 will be invited to attend the development camp - a community outreach program - to learn from a yet-to-be revealed line-up of NBA and FIBA players and coaches.
Over the past decade， Australia has firmed as a rising world basketball power with eight Australian-born players (Joe Ingles， Kyrie Irving， Mathew Dellavedova， Andrew Bogut， Dante Exum， Patty Mills， Aron Baynes and Cameron Bairstow) currently featuring in the NBA.
Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers)， Dellavedova (Cleveland Cavaliers)， Bogut (Golden State Warrior la tantouses) and Mills (San Antonio Spurs) are all still competing as part of the NBA Playoffs.
Draft nominees Ben Simmons， touted as the likely No. 1 pick in June， and Thon Maker could push the number of active Australian NBA players to a record-breaking 10， if both selected next month.
NBA Asia managing director Scott Levy， alongside Utah's shooting guard-small forward Ingles， was in the Victorian capital to make the announcement， and said the U.S.-based competition was proud to bring the initiative to Australia for the first time.
"The league has seen a surge of Australian talent in recent years， and we look forward to supporting the next generation by giving them a platform to showcase their skills alongside their peers from throughout the region，" Levy told reporters at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre on Tuesday morning.
Over its 15-year history， BWB has toured 130 countries and unearthed 37 NBA players.
As of opening-night of this season， 21 former BWB graduates were on NBA rosters.
It is unclear which Australians - and other NBA players - will return home for the June 23 to 27 event.
Many of Australia' s NBA stars have committed to play at the Rio Olympics in August as the Boomers go in search of their first male basketball Olympic medal.
Brazil's Wallace de Souza (top) spikes the ball during the men's quarterfinal of Volleyball between Brazil and Argentina at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro， Brazil， on Aug. 17， 2016. Brazil won 3-1. (XinhuaZheng Huansong)
by Betty L. Martin
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Houston Rockets, an American profession basketball team based in the space city, announced earlier that its players will wear specially designed jackets printed with Chinese characters in honor of the traditional Chinese new year in three of their games during the week-long festival.
"We are proud to once again honor our many fans in China by wearing uniforms in recognition of their cultural celebration," Houston Rockets Owner Leslie Alexander told local media.
The Rockets has established a special bond with Chinese basketball fans since Yao Ming was selected by the team as the first overall pick in the 2002 draft of the National Basketball Association (NBA).
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For common people, the Spring Festival celebrations are more than just entertainment.
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