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Egyptian Basketball Player Abdel Nader Joins the NBA

Egyptian point guard Abdel Nader was the 58th pick by the Boston Celtics for the 2016 NBA draft, making him the second Egyptian in history to join the prestigious league.

Dunking, blocking, and rebounding his way to the top, Egyptian basketball player Abdel Nader is officially joining the NBA. On Thursday night, point-guard Abdel Nader was drafted to join the Boston Celtics. He was the team's 58th pick in the 2016 NBA draft. This selection makes him the only Egyptian currently playing in the NBA and the second Egyptian to ever be in the NBA, as fellow Alexandrian-born Alaa Abdelnaby had previously played for several NBA teams, including the very same Boston Celtics.

Nader's love of basketball came later in life. Moving from Egypt to the United States at only three years old, his family had always hoped for a brighter future for their children. Settling in Illinois, Nader struggled to fit in. He only spoke Arabic, and even as he began to study English he had a thick accent. He ended up taking speech classes until he was thirteen but found that he continued to have issues in school. Then started playing basketball. His home-away-from-home became the basketball courts of Chicago's Washington Park. According to an interview in The Des Moines Register, Nader said, “It gave me like a purpose...I didn’t know what I wanted to do — like ever.”  It was those pick-up games that helped him find friends and discover that the one thing he wanted to do was play basketball.

Nader soon joined his local basketball team at Niles North High School. He took them to their first sectional championship in their forty-seven year history. Then he began to earn honours and attention for his work on the court. He brought his team to the spotlight, helping them earn the First Team All-State Honours, Chicago Sun-Times Class 4A Second Team All-State Recognition, and be named the ESPN Chicago All-Area Team.

For college he attend Northern Illinois University, and was on the basketball team there for two seasons. He had a game average of 6.11 points and 9.74 rebounds. Next he transferred to Iowa State University, where he is currently playing in his final season on one of the United States' best college teams, the Cyclones. His current game average is 12.9 points and 5.4 rebounds.

Despite being a sought-after draftee, he is expected to stay with the Boston Celtics for some time. At the moment, the team is remodeling their franchise with diverse young athletes, which makes him a perfect fit. Sports analysts, Jay Bilas, said, "He's a guy that can finish plays," and that is exactly what the team needs.


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