Denver Nuggets' Mason Plumlee to host second annual youth basketball camp in Dubai

Sport360 staff 12:30 30/07/2018
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Mason Plumlee with kids at his 2017 camp in Dubai. Picture: Chris Whiteoak/whiteoakpictures.

Denver Nuggets forward and former NCAA champion Mason Plumlee is set to return to Dubai to host his second annual youth basketball camp.

The Mason Plumlee Basketball Academy will be held August 28-31 at AFLEC School as part of the 2018 DUPLAYS dxb Hoops Summit, an event promoting the growth of basketball in the UAE.

Plumlee’s camp is open to youth ages 8-18 and will feature skill development, competition and personalised training led by an NBA star and team of world-class US and international coaches.

“I’m very excited to return to Dubai,” said Plumlee. “I enjoyed my experience last year and look forward to an even bigger and more exciting camp this summer. There will be something for everyone – for kids who are new to the game and advanced players looking to take their skills to the next level.”

Plumlee’s first visit to Dubai was during a brief team trip with the Duke Blue Devils in 2011. He enjoyed that experience so much that he vowed to return to spend more time in the Emirates.

That opportunity came in 2017, as he partnered with DUPLAYS to host his first-ever international basketball camp at GEMS Wellington Al Khail last June. The camp was one of the first for an NBA player in the region. Plumlee is the only NBA player to host camps in the UAE in consecutive years.

“It’s an honour to share my love for basketball with kids in one of the world’s great cities,” said Plumlee. “Based on my experience last year, it’s clear that there is a demand for quality basketball instruction and opportunities for local youth to learn the game.”

All camp participants will take part in a full programme of on-court drills and games and receive an autograph and photo with Plumlee as well as a Nike t-shirt. Coaches from the USA include several recent college and professional basketball stars, including members of the NCAA Champion Villanova Wildcats and staff from Kobe Bryant Academy. The registration fee is Dh900 per person and interested individuals can register at www.duplays.com.

Plumlee hopes that the camp will help grow the game of basketball and give kids a valuable – and enjoyable – learning experience.

“Basketball doesn’t require a great deal of expense or a lot of space,” said Plumlee. “You just need a ball and a hoop. Once kids have exposure to playing the game and realise how fun it can be, they’ll be hooked.”

Plumlee and DUPLAYS are exploring a partnership that would include annual camps and a year-round basketball development programme for youth in the region, as well as a world-class training and certification program for instructors.

For Plumlee, it’s a natural next step as an ambassador of the game.

“Basketball has always been an important part of my life. My parents both played in college. My two brothers play in the NBA. I’ve learned from and played with some of the best players and coaches,” said Plumlee. “Now I want to share these experiences with kids in Dubai around the world. My goal is to make this a long-term commitment.”

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