Satnam Singh is maybe least recognizable face in sports that is the face of the biggest population of human beings. As it currently stands, Singh is just a second round draft pick of an NBA team that is on the cusp of missing the playoffs.
Not only is he not on the Mavericks roster, he’s barely cracking playing time on their Developmental League team, the Texas Legends. However, as a recent article from ESPN illustrated, he’s a player that is progressing towards breaking out in the NBA.
[Head coach Bob] MacKinnon knows Singh wants to play but stresses that development comes in small increments and points out that Singh has moved up on the team’s depth chart. Less than two years removed from a postgraduate season at IMG, he’s competing alongside and against former NBA players and many others on the cusp of moving up to the NBA. It’s too early to be concerned about statistics.
“Our league is hard,” MacKinnon said matter of factly. “Our league is the second best league in the world.”
Instead, Singh’s opportunities come in practice. He’s being asked to focus on rebounding, getting up and down the court and being more active on defense. MacKinnon and assistant coach, Zendon Hamilton, both in their first season with the Legends, said they have seen significant progress from Singh.
MacKinnon also said that the pressure Singh faces being the dominant homegrown basketball figure of the world’s second most populous nation, India, is not normal. It’s pressure that Singh himself also feels.
“My goal is to make basketball more popular,” Singh said. “I think I’ve opened the gate for Indian kids. The gate is open, but they need to work hard. Wholesale Jerseys
I know it’s a lot of pressure. I just think about what I need to do. I need to focus on my game for my career, for my life, for my family, for my fans, for my country.”
Singh’s slow rise has helped him reach a level of celebrity status, which cheap basketball jerseys resulted in him being invited to participate in a professional wrestling workout at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida in January. However, despite his involvement with WWE, he made it clear where his priorities are.
“I’m here because of basketball,” Singh said. “I don’t want to lose my basketball. [WWE] is a huge opportunity, but I need to focus on basketball.”
His focus on basketball is also something that has drawn rave reviews, and he credits it to his upbringing with his father. Singh has big plans for his future, hoping to play in the Summer League for the Mavericks and then join India’s national team for the first time since 2013.
“He’s in a minority of how hard he works compared to anyone else,” said John Mahoney, who coached Singh at both the varsity and postgrad levels at IMG. “We’ve had pros come in here, but I haven’t seen anyone work like he does. Just tremendous work ethic.”