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From the New York Times Magazine:

Can the N.B.A. Find a Basketball Superstar in India?

The league thinks India could be its next billion-dollar market. But first it needs to convince young Indians to fall in love with the game.

By Reid Forgrave, Oct. 3, 2019

… He has found inspiration in the few Indian players who have come close to reaching the N.B.A. — Satnam Singh, the first Indian-born player selected in the N.B.A. draft, in 2015; Amjyot Singh, who has played in the N.B.A.’s minor-league system; and Princepal Singh, an 18-year-old near-seven-footer who is now considered India’s top N.B.A. prospect — and he knows that if a player from India makes it to the N.B.A., his sport would become a national phenomenon.

Why are so many of the better athletes of Indian descent named Singh?

“I wouldn’t have gotten admission to this college if I was not playing basketball,” Hooda told me in Hindi through an interpreter. Many Indian colleges have athlete quotas they have to fill, as part of the national government’s effort to improve the country’s sports performances; that’s how Hooda got in.

So now India is imitating America’s unusual system of having sports quotas for colleges.

While cricket is still the country’s dominant sport — the 2019 International Cricket Council World Cup attracted 545 million Indian viewers, far exceeding the entire population of the United States — plenty see basketball as a faster-paced alternative, fit for a country that’s simultaneously urbanizing and getting younger. The N.B.A. has invested accordingly: Its projects include a youth basketball program that it claims has reached 10 million Indian children; an N.B.A.-run basketball academy located outside New Delhi that houses, educates and trains two dozen teenagers full time; and the hosting of the N.B.A.’s first preseason games in India, when the Sacramento Kings play the Indiana Pacers in Mumbai this month. At a September rally in Houston for India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, President Trump touted the upcoming games and asked, “Am I invited?”

Don’t you usually come down with gastrointestinal distress on about your 3rd days in India?

“But a billion people? That’s the biggest friend basketball in India can have.” What he meant was that there has to be a future N.B.A. talent somewhere in this huge country.

Maybe. My vague impression is that Northern Indians grow tall if they get enough calories. My son’s high school Sikh friend was perhaps 6’9″ to the top of his turban by graduation.

But how many world class athletes are of Indian descent? Since 2000, India has won one Olympic gold medal.

45 years ago I was a fan of Indian tennis player Vijay Amritraj, a 6’4″ rich kid from Madras. He wasn’t the best player during tennis’s 1970s golden age, but to win a major championship you often had to beat Vijay in, say, the quarterfinals. For his career he had 5 wins and 6 losses against Jimmy Connors, which ain’t bad.

But since then, most Indian athletic talent has gone into cricket, a sport that I respect but find puzzling.

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  1. No.

    Cricket caught on in India for a reason. Anyone who knows Indian people can see the appeal to them of a leisurely game that does not require much exertion, where they can play while also distractedly talking to each other at the same time as someone else on the phone, while simultaneously watching a movie. With their unmatched stamina, tolerance of boredom, love of arguing loudly about rules, and slow twitch muscles, cricket is the ideal sport.

  2. “cricket, a sport that I respect but find puzzling”

    Just think of cricket as baseball with a circular diamond, only two bases, and rather than three strikes you bat in front of three ‘stumps’ which must be legally defended with the bat. Catches (in the air) and ‘run-outs’ are pretty much as in baseball.

    The score at this point was sixty-nine for six, last man fifty-two.

    The only other incident in the innings was provided by an American journalist, by name Shakespeare Pollock—an intensely active, alert, on-the-spot young man. Mr. Pollock had been roped in at the last moment to make up the eleven, and Mr. Hodge and Mr. Harcourt had spent quite a lot of time on the way down trying to teach him the fundamental principles of the game. Donald had listened attentively and had been surprised that they made no reference to the Team Spirit. He decided in the end that the reason must have been simply that everyone knows all about it already, and that it is therefore taken for granted.

    Mr. Pollock stepped up to the wicket in the lively manner of his native mustang, refused to take guard, on the ground that he wouldn’t know what to do with it when he had got it, and, striking the first ball he received towards square leg, threw down his bat, and himself set off at a great rate in the direction of cover-point. There was a paralysed silence. The rustics on the bench rubbed their eyes. On the field no one moved. Mr. Pollock stopped suddenly, looked round, and broke into a genial laugh.

    Darn me——” he began, and then he pulled himself up and went on in refined English, “Well, well! I thought I was playing baseball.” He smiled disarmingly round.

    Baseball is a kind of rounders, isn’t it, sir?” said cover-point sympathetically.

    Donald thought he had never seen an expression change so suddenly as Mr. Pollock’s did at this harmless, and true, statement. A look of concentrated, ferocious venom obliterated the disarming smile. Cover-point, simple soul, noticed nothing, however…

    A.G. MacDonnell, England Their England, 1932.

  3. A lot has been made of HBD and caste in India. Obviously Sikhs must be better athletes than the Hindus and Muslims, most likely because they have a tradition of fighting and warfare. And from my own anecdotal experiences, Indians with the surname “Patel” must come from a lower caste. The ones I’ve met with that surname have never struck me as scholarly types. And last year, there was a Patel in my son’s grade school class who was one of the worst students, as well as the most disruptive.

  4. Zoodles says:

    Oddly enough, the only group of melanated Neo-Canadians who have taken to Ice Hockey are also named Singh.

    I think as wealth and nutrition improve, India will become a very major sports power. They are the single most genetically diverse nation on earth, and as a region, thier diversity of genes is exceeded only by africa.

    • Replies: @Tony
    , @pyrrhus
  5. Altai says:

    One thing that has always shocked me is that in the English Premiere League, sufficed with foreign players as it has become, the players born in England are still almost totally of Jamaican, British or Irish ancestry. (Though in the last few years quite a few players with Nigerian parents have sprung up as get around 20 years since the beginning of mass Nigerian abuse of the asylum systems in the West)

    Yet the massive influx of South Asians doesn’t make it’s presence felt at all. There are a few but you can quite easily watch every major fixture and never see a single one. Part of this is socio-economic, players are still overwhelmingly drawn from working class backgrounds and Indians tend to be more concentrated in the middle classes. But Pakistanis are a big part of the working classes in England.

    I assume it is cultural, that parents don’t encourage their sons desire to put lots of time, money and effort into the long-shot of becoming a professional athlete. And if those leagues are full of black and English boys and their families maybe it’s just another form of self-segregation. But maybe it’s also to do with maturation or physique.

  6. Dignan says:

    Not only was Vijay a good tennis player; he also was cool enough to appear in Octopussy as James Bond’s Indian guide.

  7. Dtbb says:

    Vijay drives a mean took-took too.

  8. Jesse says:

    Cricket’s brilliant. It’s more physically exerting than outsiders think, and the rules are extremely simple but you look classy for knowing them. I see nothing wrong with Indian athletes focusing on it, rather than hyperventaling at the idea that foreigners don’t think they’re athletic at all. It’s actual diversity – you don’t see the Irish panicking that the GAA takes their best athletes.

  9. Jack D says:

    Why are so many of the better athletes of Indian descent named Singh?

    Singh (Lion) is a Sikh surname (all male Sikhs are supposed to carry this name). Sikhs were a warrior race and were bred to be big.

  10. Why are so many of the better athletes of Indian descent named Singh?

    It’s a Rajput name, and a very common one.

  11. Paul Rise says:

    In the nicer suburbs of Texas cities, it’s common to see tiny Indian parents with their US born kids towering over them. It’s very striking what one generation of proper nutrition has done for them.

  12. segundo says:

    “Why are so many of the better athletes of Indian descent named Singh?”

    While “Singh” is the subcontinental version of “Jones”, it is still far more likely to be found as the surname of Sikhs and Rajputs, both groups being more militarily/athletically inclined than the average subcontinental. A good Info entry here:

    I had a Rajput gf in college. Upon learning that her surname was “Singh”, I commented that she must be a Sikh, because I “knew” that all Singhs were Sikhs. She wasn’t amused. Despite that rocky start, we had some good times.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  13. Polynikes says:

    In all my years of playing and coaching basketball I don’t know if I ever saw an Indian playing. And I grew up near a city with a sizable Indian population. I would say white kids, black kids, the occasional Asian, and a few Latinos, but I don’t remember and Indian kid.

    I think the NBA has their work cut out for them here.

  14. Alice says:

    Does anyone know a resource for understanding relationships of surnames and caste in India?

    Singhs vs Krishnamurthy vs Venkatan vs Bandopadthy vs Patel…

    What about those people with only one name?

  15. @william munny

    I speculate that one of the attractions of cricket, at all levels, is that except for fast pitchers (bowlers) who tend to be big and tall guys the sport does not favor any particular physical type. It is easy for a spectator to daydream that but for chance, he too could be one of those out in the field.

    For Indians, in particular, who are mostly not very large nor muscular types, even compared to East Asians, this makes it a particularly accessible and easy to relate to as an international sport. They can hold their own against the giants from the Caribbean, or the strong limbed white men from England or Australia.

    • Replies: @Altai
  16. How could a man of your sizable intellect find cricket puzzling? It’s just baseball or ROUNDERS played with two “wickets” (pseudo-bases) and ends up being extremely fun cause the most exciting part (batting) is extended indefinitely and “pitchers” have to bowl which is way slower than baseball pitching so the hitter has an advantage. It’s also kind of like a home run derby but with a base at the pitchers “mound” and at home, and batsmen alternate hitting at home or the mound with almost no foul balls. Good stuff just a bit long with international test matches taking a week to finish.

    • Replies: @Jonathan Mason
  17. NickG says:

    Don’t you usually come down with gastrointestinal distress on about your 3rd days in India?

    As one who was born in Calcutta and lived in India for his first decade, I can assure you this old chestnut ……is entirely true.

    Delhi belly is endemic amongst visitors. You have to be very careful.

    • Replies: @Escher
  18. His Name is Allen Henderson: Iowa pastor beaten and robbed to death by WN wigger Joshua Pendleton

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    , @J.Ross
  19. Svevlad says:

    Their biggest problem is the one that Asians are ridding themselves of (except maybe the Japanese) – they simply have very weak diets

    Basketball doesn’t have a tradition in India, to them it’s basically what is cricket to us – some weird convoluted and, most importantly, foreign thing

    Though the sports they’re best at seems to be surviving in unlivable conditions, from everyday uberpollution to them dudes that jump on nails and be uninjured

  20. Why are so many of the better athletes of Indian descent named Singh?

    Perhaps Sikhs have a better diet? They are not allowed to smoke or drink alcohol, and there is a prohibition on ritually slaughtered meat. Although Sikhs are not banned from eating beef like Hindus, meat eating is generally frowned upon and many Sikhs are vegetarian.

    Interestingly, the Sikh culture had its origins in what is now Pakistan, in the area of the North West frontier, but after partition nearly all Sikhs moved to what is now India.

    There is probably a lot of genetic admixture between Pashtun and Sikh populations, which might contribute to athletic ability.

    Imran Kahn, now Prime Minister of Pakistan is of Pashtun origin and was a very famous cricket player, a great athlete. and playboy in his early career–a bit like Jack Nicklaus becoming President.

  21. Altai says:

    Very rarely a few middle aged and overweight players have shown up at international level for some of the smaller islands. Here is a player from Bermuda. But I think those days are over. The likes of Freddie Flintoff are becoming more common. Will the image of boorish frat-boy like pro cricket players spending lots of time in the gym ever not be funny though? Probably not. Unless they somehow find a way to add full contact tackling.

    Fair play to the Bermudan player though, that was a nice catch.

  22. So, the NBA has decided China is nothing?

    • Agree: bomag
  23. Tiny Duck says:

    cricket is the lame colonial game

    Basketball is the game of the Youth and embraces all that is good about the future (color, hip hop, inclusiveness)

    It would be a win-win for both the NBA and India if basketball takes off in India. Young people in India today enjoy sport largely vicariously – there is a woeful shortage of sports infrastructure for the general public. Small wonder that India enjoys the dubious distinction of the lowest number of olympic gold medals per capita. Basketball, unlike cricket, requires very little infrastructure. Two hoops, a relatively small playing-field, and a ball.

    Just like it took off in the poorer black neighbourhoods in the US, Basketball is the perfect foil for cricket, a game that is largely inaccessible, expensive, elitist, and largely a spectator sport. I’d cheer the day when India is dotted with basketball courts. Go NBA to India!

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    , @George Taylor
  24. But how many world class athletes are of Indian descent?

  25. kihowi says:

    As every story these days it’s a concatenation bizarre ideas that are just put out there as too obviously true to discuss or explain.

    That the National Basketball Association needs to be in a foreign country.

    That therefore young Indians should be manipulated to “fall in love” with it.

    That that would only take one Indian in the nba.

    That India needs to perform better in sports.

    That the government should come up with quotas to make it happen.

    That colleges should be in the sports business.

    That Indians shouldn’t just decide for themselves whether they prefer cricket or something else.

  26. @Jack D

    Sikhs were a warrior race and were bred to be big.

    A large proportion of the Sikhs I have seen, identifiable by the headgear, are big guys. A recent cop killing had a Sikh as its victim:

    Not a little guy.

  27. @Jonathan Mason

    Perhaps Sikhs have a better diet? They are not allowed to smoke or drink alcohol, and there is a prohibition on ritually slaughtered meat. Although Sikhs are not banned from eating beef like Hindus, meat eating is generally frowned upon and many Sikhs are vegetarian.

    Vegetarianism is a bad diet you retard

    • Agree: Alden
    • Replies: @Anonymous
  28. mmack says:

    So Steve, are you saying these H-1B(asketball) Indians will come here to play in the NBA for $50K a year and the chance for a Green Card?

  29. Don’t you usually come down with gastrointestinal distress on about your 3rd days in India?

    I think I saw something on the internet about a very practical actor who was going to go on a set in one of these regions of the globe unpleasantly conducive to getting “gastrointestinal distress” and he packed a large suitcase full of sardines, beans, chili and other such goods in order to avoid eating the local grub. His idea for drinking was a combination of bottled ale and bottled beer and bottled porter and other such bottled liquids.

    Seems reasonable and smart. I bet the Hollywood actors now demand in their contracts bottled water and fancy canned food to ward off “gastrointestinal distress” while filming in foreign locations.

    • Replies: @Alden
  30. There’s one proven way to make Indians care about basketball: market it as an anti-white sport.

    I’m serious. Look at all the media coverage of the Toronto Raptors’ NBA title last Spring. Toronto is filled with Indian Immigrants and Canada-born children of Indian immigrants. All of them HATE hockey and the Maple Leafs, and are puzzlingly proud that they never embraced a “white” team or sport.

    By contrast, they adore the Raptors, a team they said “looks like us.” (Wait… they think African-American Kawhi Leonard looks like them? How?)

    The NBA can win Indians over by telling them, “Basketball is the sport for all non-white peoples!”

    • Replies: @LoutishAngloQuebecker
  31. Indian athletes seem to excel most in sports bequeathed by the colonial British, such as cricket, badminton, tennis, with nearly all the really famous wealthy athletes being cricketers.

    Cricket is a MASSIVE medium for betting and gambling in India, which explains a lot of its popularity, and perhaps why there is so much money sloshing around the sport.

    In the English Premier (Soccer) League, it is noticeable that the game is dominated by players of West Indian origins, whether mulatto or black, and by African players, and that considering their numbers, there are barely any Indians or Pakistanis among top soccer players, although players of subcontinental origin have played for the England cricket team which consists largely of players imported from South Africa, plus a few Yorkies.

    2019 European soccer club champions Liverpool. Note that the photo includes a mixed race player from Brazil next to the goalie, plus one Egyptian Muslim (technically African) at the other end of the back row.

  32. Anonymous[337] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    And a shocking oversight for @ISteve to overlook Vijay Singh who rose to number 1 in the world on the PGA tour in the early 2000’s

    A tall bomber off the tee. Technically a Fiian I assume.

    Is golf really a sport though ?

  33. bomag says:

    the 2019 International Cricket Council World Cup attracted 545 million Indian viewers

    If it’s all about the numbers for the corporate ad guys who run sports in this country, maybe it’s time to turn us all into cricket fans.

    Will those hundreds of millions of Indian fans ever have much disposable income to blow on such theater?

  34. Perhaps iSteve commentator Rec1Man will chime in, but the Sikh religion/ethnicity has an interesting history in India. Around the time of the Mughal empire, the Hindu Faithfuo realized they needed protection and, either by fiat or self-selection, rounded up the strongest/bravest and set them aside as “Defenders of the Faith”, if you will. Then, it slowly emerged as a distinct caste/religion/endogenous group.
    Sikhs and Hindus are both fully aware and on-board with this (folk?)history, and all accept/agree to these roles. Sikhs are the “big brother looking out” for the “defenseless but great little brother” and Hindus are the “little brother who has a good job and remembers his family often” type things. A western analogy would be as if the Swiss Guards of the Vatican or the Beef Eaters of The Tower of London were hereditary positions.
    Sikhs, by conquest and by policy, formed a buffet in the Northern Marches against Pakistan.
    This has interesting historical components. It was customary to have Sikh guards for the Indian President(perhaps the ur-expression if their caste/duty) but then the Sikh guards felt that Ghandi was bad for the body-politic and assassinated her (like the Hitler Bomb Plot but without any of the negative connotations “Hitler” carries). Now, there’s much less automatic assumption of “Sikh Defense”, and we’re still in the middle of figuring out where this leaves both groups.
    As to the athletic achievements of SubCons, it’s a bit unfair to go by medals. Cricket takes all the oxygen out of the room in the SubCon and is not an Olympic sport. So naturally they do poorly in the Olympics.
    In cricket, however, they do very very well internationally. Tandulkar Singh is a once-in-a-century batsman. Imran Khan in his day was top notch, the Rowalpindi Express is among the best fast bowlers to have ever played etc.

  35. Barnard says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    Given the size of their population, India has produced very few successful pro tennis players. In singles right now the highest ranked Indian man is 84th and the highest ranked woman is 191st. They have had two high quality doubles players in the past, but not much more success beyond that.

  36. ia says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    They are not allowed to smoke or drink alcohol,

    Sikhs drink alcohol.

  37. Indians are also quite good at squash.

  38. Luke Lea says:

    Hypothesis: because of the caste system there has been very little competition in Indian society. It is not part of the culture and, therefore, if we accept the idea of gene-culture co-evolution, it is not in their genes either. Other traits evolved instead.

    • Replies: @Mike1
    , @Aft
  39. guest says:

    “There lotsa Indians, therefore I’ll eventually find a way to profit.”

    – international business geniuses

  40. @Jonathan Mason

    I note that, in that video, the #3 greatest of all time Indian “athlete” is actually a chess player—Vishwanathan Anand, who was world chess champion for a number of years.

  41. @Jonathan Mason

    First time I’ve ever seen Jack Nicklaus’ name in the same sentence as playboy.

  42. @Jonathan Mason

    “barely any Indians or Pakistanis among top soccer players”

    Are there any at all?

    When I played amateur Sunday football in Hackney, in the 80s and 90s, there were quite a few decent Indian/Pakistani players.

    But even at that level, they were underrepresented and West Indians were overrepresented.

    One factor for Black overrepresentation is that they mature earlier and get into player development programmes – saying this got a French national coach fired.

  43. The main advantage in cricket is to be left-handed.

    How come Vijay Singh is darker than Africans?

    • Replies: @anon
  44. I taught snow skiing for many years – it was universally understood by all instructors that the ethnic group that had the most trouble learning the sport were Indians.

    The slightest slip would freak most Indians out. Just a tiny movement of the ski – while standing on flat ground – would elicit symptoms of panic. Many would fall down the moment that they began to slide down a gentle, short beginner slope, a slope so gentile that the maximum speed that could be obtained would be about a fast walk (three-four mph).

  45. Anon[324] • Disclaimer says:
    @william munny

    I LOL’d at this. Back in the 1980s a Los Angeles movie theater on Wilshire rented itself out to Indians once a week or so. I had already done the rounds of the movie theaters in Chinatown and the Linda Lea in Little Tokyo, among others. I figured that Bollywood was next up in my exotic movie education. I bought a ticket and walked in and the lobby had all kinds of food on card tables like a potluck or a Japanese cherry blossom party. People were talking and kids were running everywhere. When I entered the theater itself the lights were on and things were pretty much the same as the lobby, but less food. There was a movie going, but nobody was watching it. I asked, and someone told me the movie was 4 hours long. I hung around for half and hour and left.

    • Replies: @Jesse
  46. Shaq says:

    This reminds me of the scene in Airplane when the stewardess hands out the “famous Jewish sports legends” pamphlet.

    • Replies: @mmack
  47. Mike1 says:
    @Luke Lea

    That makes sense. People’s position in Indian society has been purely hereditary and you didn’t even need to impress a potential wife. If you were a poor physical specimen your potential bride had no real mechanism to complain (Indians claim that in an arranged marriage the potential wife had veto power but that is mostly nonsense).

  48. Oh Noes. Are they going to bring in NBA types from Hinduland now??? They’ve already driven me and a whole lot of other folks from tech (a mix of above average IQ married with intense ethnic nepotism and a whole lot of ‘globalist clannishness’ built into their psyche)!!

    Beware my niggas!! They are gonna H1B y’all too, pretty soon!!!

  49. AKAHorace says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    Sikhs drink more than most Indians do.

  50. Not sure about their other Olympic sports, but India’s wrestling team has made vast improvements in the past five to ten years. They have a pretty popular domestic wrestling league that attracts a lot of Russian, Georgian, Azerbaijani, etc. athletes.

  51. Aft says:
    @Luke Lea

    Nailed it.

    The only good thing Indian genetics have going for them is they breed true.

    Lack of competition/mobility just built up a lot of genetic load with no standout traits (which is one of the reasons they’re the least desired race in the dating market…).

  52. Maybe the NBA can convince the government to cut power to villages that don’t watch basketball; it’s how they are trying to get people to stop pooping in the open:

    Can India be the world’s next great superpower when it can’t even get its shit together?

  53. GSR says:

    NBA lobbying US Govt to include Babu basketball players under the H-1B visa racket.

  54. Paleoconn says:

    I’m a bit annoyed when articles put the periods for league acronyms like NBA NFL NHL. Perhaps a robot wrote or helped with the article. Or maybe the writer is like Obama when it comes to pro sports (Miami Heats and Cominskey Field).

  55. Why are so many of the better athletes of Indian descent named Singh?

    The Patels have cornered the low-end bed-and-free-coffee trade, and the Gandhis have the inside track in homeland politics.

    I’ve just read somewhere that a young American man of seven-foot stature has a 17% chance of being in the NBA.

    How is polo doing these days? Just as Derby’s Baseball Ground was lost to soccer, New York’s Polo Grounds were used instead for baseball and football. By Giants, no less.

  56. Anon[143] • Disclaimer says:

    American elites arrogance in full display here. If Indians like basketball, they can have their own league there. This is about getting Indians to look up to (eventually) black American athletes so that they too will let their borders open to tons of 21st century African outward migration. China will be next. Gotta have a dicriminated-against-group to inflict racial guilt against nationalism.

    • Replies: @Alden
  57. The Northwest of India was the channel for the Moguls, etc to invade the subcontinent so that region had the strongest military cultures. I work in IT (lots on Indians about) and it’s generally easy to tell a Punjabi from a Tamil, the former are much taller and generally more outgoing and showy.

    • Replies: @Tony
  58. Once upon a time there was a tribe of giants who lived in Cashmere:

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  59. Alden says:

    Can anyone tell me why conservative misogynist White men worship black athletes? I stopped reading Vogue and other women’s magazines when they began featuring black models and black women.

    Just what is it about White men that they’re so obsessed with black athletes?

    • Replies: @J.Ross
    , @Spangel
  60. @Jonathan Mason

    Those fellows may be “chartered”, but they sure don’t look “standard”!

  61. J.Ross says:
    @william munny

    The American action movie has demonstrations of masculinity which are variously preposterous or dandyish, or tied to real life things like MMA or rock climbing.
    The Russian action movie has demonstrations of masculinity out of medieval hagiography, for both long mental suffering and acute physical suffering.
    The East Asian action movie has demonstrations of masculinity which draw upon well honed skills and rigid discipline.
    The Indian action movie —

  62. J.Ross says:

    I have a book which I cannot share right now but will dig up later, which is essentially positive Indian propaganda for the American Born Confused Desi inevitably at med school and at a loss to rattle off Indian accomplishments to benighted friends. It’s very interesting but it’s almost all numbers.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  63. J.Ross says:

    The only examples that come to mind would be a RINO eager to prove he’s not racist or familiar with non-sports statistics (and accomplishing nothing), or Atlantic editor J. Goldberg, who is not conservative, white, or all that male.
    >I stopped reading Vogue

  64. Jesse says:

    An Indian friend once explained that Bollywood films are almost comically communal. Possibly for financial reasons, the whole family goes to the same film. There will be something – comedy, romance, action – for everyone. But you’re expected to stay for the bits you don’t like, just like everyone else has to stick with the bits you like. (The tragedy of the commons comes to mind.)

    • Replies: @Anon
  65. Why not just lower the hoops?
    If it is being televised, just lower the camera tripods too. No-one would notice.

  66. Spangel says:

    Black athletes are not like black models. Most sports are extremely meritocratic. By rights, many black athletes are legitimately great athletes. Men who admire athletic prowess are going to end up admiring some black athletes if they are honest with themselves.

    Unlike legitimately great black athletes, black models are typically less attractive and featured only for the sake of diversity. Granted, it doesn’t seem like most magazines are really attempting to feature the most attractive white women either. In any case, the models vogue chooses to promote is not about objective beauty.

  67. “One billion people.”

    This is a mercantile – a bania – mentality. The merchant knows nothing of quality, only quantity. This was the same rubbish mentality which lead to the race to “capture” the Indian market and which lead to the rush to transfer IT jobs to the blighted and odoriferous sub-continent.

    They too will crash against the wall of reality.

  68. @Tiny Duck

    the poorer black neighbourhoods in the US

    It’s neighborhoods in the US. (Except for some anti-Webster CSA types.)

    Did you outsource this to Fiverr?

    India has a long tradition with baskets:

    Here’s a nice logo for a northern team:

    Go NBA to India!

    And don’t let the dvaar (द्वार) hit you on the way out!

  69. @william munny

    India and the rest of South Asia got hooked on cricket , instead of say Soccer, because the British who ruled the area came from the upper classes, The English aristocracy and upper class are known for their affinity for Cricket and Rugby while Soccer is considered the blue collar / working class game.

    • Replies: @sb
  70. @Throckmorton


    Alien immigrants hate hockey because they feel left out. They wish they could play, but they can’t, so they become bitter and resentful.

    Remember, the strategy is to turn All White Things into Non-White Things. When that fails, they want to destroy it.

    Frankly I’m glad that they hate hockey. I’m very happy to have all white guys at the rink.

    I’m also happy that the brown hordes in Toronto are turning into Negro Idolizers. Bad for the country, but it prevents their assimilation and creates more friction between them and whites.

    To be fair, millions of white idiots across Canada also declared the Raptors “their team”.

  71. Singhs are usually Sikh. Sikhs are badass warriors.

  72. Alden says:
    @Charles Pewitt

    Problem with Delhi belly and other GI problems is that sometimes they never go away. So it’s a life time of mess and Dr visits that can’t cure the problem

  73. Alden says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Somebody liked her well enough to give her a baby.

    • Replies: @Tony
    , @Truth
    , @Autochthon
  74. Alden says:

    My first thought was that it’s just more TV advertising. Get Indian men hooked on black ball. Soon they’ll be watching it day and night and AD revenue will pour in. I’m sure Nike’s Adaias etc look forward to selling billions of pairs of overpriced shoes to Indians

    • Replies: @PiltdownMan
  75. Farenheit says:

    I hope the fist Indian player to play for the NBA is Rammit Balldeep!

  76. India dominated hockey (field hockey to some of you) before it moved to astroturf. And I mean dominated. Nowadays the caricature of a team of Sikh hockey players is that they will (i) have extremely good individual skills, and (ii) be competitive to the point of bastardry. They are essentially the Argentinians of hockey.

    I always enjoyed watching Sikhs play (?) Tamils at kabaddi, which occasionally would turn up on Channel 4 in the UK . Now there’s a great sport. From

    After the success of its gridiron coverage, Channel 4 turned its attentions to the subcontinent and the ancient Indian discipline kabaddi. To the uninitiated, kabaddi looked like nothing more than a bunch of barefooted Indian blokes playing tag in the sunshine. But then it did to the initiated as well. Sadly, despite fixtures such as West Bengal Police versus the Punjab, kabaddi failed to capture the imagination of the British viewers and as a result plans for further programmes based around playground games such as British bulldog and bikeshed smoking were soon shelved.


    (jazzed up for TV)

  77. @Franz Liszt von raiding

    Good stuff just a bit long with international test matches taking a week to finish.

    Actually they are played over 5 sucessive days, compared to golf tournaments over 4 days, and Wimbledon tennis over 2 weeks. However in many cases the game is completed in 3 or 4 days and the 5th day is a blank. Given the English climate, it is not unknown for entire days to be lost to rain, so the extra day can really be regarded as a rain-check day.

    Cricket is not as boring as people think, and attendance at cricket matches provides an excellent opportunity to socialize, gamble, eat picnic lunches, drink beer, get some sunshine and fresh air, and generally have a good time in pleasant surroundings.

  78. Anonymous[190] • Disclaimer says:

    I’d actually pay to see you tell that to Chrissie Hynde to her face.

  79. A few sessions at the tanning salon and Reid Forgrave might pass in India:

    Reid Forgrave = Drag over fire.

    Now this is a “full court press”!

    Reid Forgrave = A fridge rover.

    Thus he is the perfect choice for GQ to report on America’s most underrated basketball town:

    The Most Baller Place to Watch an NBA Game Is In… Salt Lake City?

    But there may be a faux pas:

    It seems bizarre to say the most luxurious luxury suite in America is in once-sleepy Salt Lake City, and is owned by a Mormon family whose stiffest drinks are Diet Cokes.

    Diet Coke has caffeine, doesn’t it? Mormons can’t even drink A&W Cream Soda!

  80. @S. M. Coulton

    A classmate who hailed from Ft Dodge told us back in the early ’80s that his high school had armed guards. We couldn’t believe it. Nobody else’s did, not even in much bigger towns.

    Must have a long wigger history there. This perpetrator was in diapers then.

  81. Stan says:

    Just what India needs. ghetto culture.

  82. Steve, I think if you had watched the final of the recent cricket World Cup or the recent Ashes series between England and Australia, notably the third Ashes test( look for highlights of Stokes innings) you might not be unpuzzled but you will certaintly be entertained. You may decide that baseball doesn’t cut it anymore.

    • Replies: @Cowboy Shaw
  83. Of the Indians I have seen at work, I don’t one has ever been taller than 5’10”, but most are much shorter. So no, I don’t think so. But.. can they find a rap star in India? Pretty much the same thing, right?

  84. J.Ross says:
    @S. M. Coulton

    Regarding “WN wigger,” do you have a local source? The local news sites I’ve looked at don’t even mention if Mr Wonderful has a tattoo.

  85. …fit for a country that’s simultaneously urbanizing and getting younger.

    Not to mention running out of space. The minimum-sized cricket grounds could hold about 33 NBA courts. And they like them larger.

    Basketball is in tan at 0:36, cricket in olive green at 1:10:

    Basketball is third to the left of field hockey:

    If basketball does catch on over there, and they export here, I will be overloaded.

    Ankit Hooda =

    Kinda a hoot.
    I took a hand.
    A kid on oath.

    Princepal Singh =

    Arching nipples.
    Prancing, he slip.

    Amjyot Singh = Shag my joint.

    • Replies: @prosa123
  86. @Tiny Duck

    cricket is the lame colonial game

    Basketball is the game of the Youth and embraces all that is good about the future (color, hip hop, inclusiveness)

    Haha, this is one of your better trolls in a while.

    @Tiny Duck you should check out In the Shadow of the Moon on Netflix. It’s like your wettest dream fantasy come true.

  87. Tony says:
    @Sir Barken Hyena

    Northwest India was known as the home of the so called martial races.

    • Replies: @Dr Van Nostrand
  88. Tony says:

    Keep dreaming. In countries with large Indian diaspora (Guyana, Trinidad, Fiji) very few Indians are on the olympic teams.

  89. Tony says:

    Of course. A male of african ancestry would jump at the chance to be with her.

  90. @Hapalong Cassidy

    More broadly, the populations deriving from the great river-based agricultural civilizations seem to have undergone more modest selection for athleticism than those of the remote hunter-gatherer societies.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  91. prosa123 says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Oval-shaped Australian Rules Football fields are huge. While some are smaller, like baseball fields there are individual variations, some can be as large as 185 meters x 155 meters.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  92. I can’t decide what I care less about – the NBA or India.

    • Agree: pyrrhus
  93. Having watched a good deal of the recent FIBA offering, there are lots of countries where hoops can take off before India. China is the big one, although they were terrible in the tournament. But the fans in Beijing were lively and enthusiastic and enjoyed the high level of play by other teams. I daresay if that tournament was ever held in India the arenas would be 3/4 empty and populated mostly by visiting face-painters from Lithuania.

    The problem with India is that they view sports the same way the Brits do. If it wasn’t introduced to the world by Britain, and blessed by the British ruling classes, it’s not proper sport. Britain did a hell of a mind-fuck on India. They did it to Ireland too, but at least the Irish have one sport of their own.

  94. Remember the feel-good story a few years ago about two young Indian guys invited over by the Pirates as pitching prospects? The PR shot of them riding on an elephant? Well that didn’t work out, although we do have one big Latvian or Lithuanian guy with a double-digit ERA

  95. 45 years ago I was a fan of Indian tennis player Vijay Amritraj, a 6’4″ rich kid from Madras. He wasn’t the best player during tennis’s 1970s golden age, but to win a major championship you often had to beat Vijay in, say, the quarterfinals. For his career he had 5 wins and 6 losses against Jimmy Connors, which ain’t bad.

    I haven’t seen him on TV in a couple of decades, but Vijay Amritraj used to come across as an unusually amiable and relaxed kind of guy who lacked the killer instinct necessary to be a grand-slam champion. On the other hand, not a lot of people have beaten Rod Laver, Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors as Vijay Amritraj has. It must feel good to be Vijay Amritraj.

  96. Jack D says:

    There are Christians named Cohen too. The reason is the same in both cases: converts. After the Sikhs lost power to the British in the 19th century a lot of them converted to other religions.

    • Replies: @PiltdownMan
  97. Truth says:

    Now that’s saying a lot.

  98. @John Achterhof

    In Southeastern Europe are the mountain people better at sports than the Danube basin people? Somebody from the Balkans is good at sports, but I don’t know much about them.

    • Replies: @John Achterhof
    , @anon
  99. @Jack D

    After the Sikhs lost power to the British in the 19th century a lot of them converted to other religions

    There’s no mention of that anywhere, as far as I can see online. The Sikhs seem to have thrived after they lost power to the British in 1849, amongst the very last group to do so on the sub-continent over a period of a hundred years or more of British ascendancy and supremacy. If anything, they were quickly co opted into the British-Indian military forces in India as a preferred “martial race” and given their own regiment.

    But a search on Wikipedia does reveal that the name and honorific “Singh” from the Sanskrit word for lion, predates the Sikh religion by a few hundred years, and came to be adopted by diverse sub-castes and groups in Northern and Central India. It replaced earlier an earlier title, “Varman”, that indicated superior social status. I get the impression that while it is now a surname for many Indian groups now, it functioned much like “esquire” or “right honorable” used to, in England.

    • Replies: @Jack D
  100. @Alden

    Get Indian men hooked on black ball.

    The Indian guys I’ve met don’t exactly, uh, relate to black guys and black culture. Part of the reason cricket has taken off in India in the last 30 years or so is because the Indian team started winning more at the international level. My hunch is that, for a sport to succeed as a spectator sport in India, the audience has to be able to imagine themselves as the players. That’s not been an issue here in America in at least 70 years, if not a century.

  101. @Hapalong Cassidy

    Sikhs and Punjabis in general are historically not martial. They have been martialized in the last 300 years.
    Southern state of Kerala produces more athletes than Punjab.

  102. @Tony

    Lol no. Northwestern India including present day Pakistan has been under foreign rule almost continuously since about 600 BCE. Those guys including Afghans are actually quite hopeless

    • Replies: @Tony
  103. anonymous[194] • Disclaimer says:

    An NBA superstar from India????!!!!

    Has there been even one white player born in the U.S. after the 1960’s who has gone on to achieve legitimate superstar/hall of fame status in the NBA ?

  104. anon[189] • Disclaimer says:
    @David 'The Diversity Mastermind' Lammey

    The British imported Indian coolies to work the sugar plantations on Fiji.
    These low caste people tended to be black.
    Since they can’t marry outside caste, they’ve stayed black.

  105. sb says:

    That is a bit simplistic . Cricket was the bigger game for all English classes before WWI ( some would say WWII ) Also rugby has always had working class adherents in certain regions ( & rugby league has a very working class culture )

    If you also look at the other region where cricket thrived among the locals or non white settlers -the West Indies – you might conclude that it had something to do with locals copying what the white guys enjoyed .
    In British Africa most locals didn’t comprehend the idea of organised games for fun until a much later period)
    Even in places like Argentina , where soccer came via British railway workers , cricket largely came first . It’s just that the locals preferred soccer . It’s a much simpler game

    Indians did also play soccer from the start . They would have been considered the #1 team in Asia before WWII.
    Look up the Indian soccer team at the 1948 London Olympics . They were invited to the 1950 World Cup -which they (stupidly ) declined

    The other historically big game in India ( & Pakistan ) is (field ) hockey which once rivalled cricket in popularity .
    Since the elite game started being played on artificial surfaces rather than grass the South Asianperformance and interest has rather declined ( plus rich whites started taking chasing Olympic medals more seriously )

  106. @Steve Sailer

    What is this, a quiz? Based on your own theory attributing the general athletic differences between east (endurance) and west (speed, strength) Africans to topographical differences I suppose you can answer this question as adequately as anybody.

    It takes many generations for significant genetic compositional differences between populations to accrue. I suppose the selection for athleticism is mediated not so much directly by way of success in obtaining food and escaping threats but primarily by the higher status (and corresponding higher reproductive fitness) accorded to those exhibiting the kind of fitness that is valued by the group. This is what is meant by the term “gene-culture co-evolution”.

  107. sb says:
    @Jonathan Mason

    I’ve been in Indian Government liquor stores where the overwhelmingly majority of customers are Sikhs .
    Furthermore Sikhs have a liking for the military life where hard drinking is viewd favourably as manly

    They don’t smoke though

  108. @Harpo of Wolli Creek

    The Stokes innings was one of the greatest individual achievements in a team sport ever. It was simply mindboggling. It just shouldn’t have been possible. It basically wasn’t until he did it.

    • Replies: @anon
  109. anon[351] • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer

    They’re taller so probably little bit better, but it’s not big difference for example all the best basketball point guards in ex-Yugoslavia have origins from small area in around Danube, Sava and Drina rivers, while centers traditionally come from Dinaric mountains.

    That’s why Serbia tends to have most complete roster in basketball, compared to Croatia and other ex-yu countries. Slovenia won last Eurobasket winning over incomplete Serbian team, but they had a Serbian PG, Goran Dragić whose parents are from already mentioned area (Zvornik in Bosnia&Herzegovina, city on Drina river) but migrated sometimes to Slovenia.

    Best NBA center Jokić is born in Panonian plain city Sombor but his family has origins in Herzegovina.

    But except height it could be also hand eye coordination, there was a study that showed that South Slavs have it best in Europe. I don’t know how good it was, it may be just bragging one, but it may have some truth. There’s a lot of good passers from area. Jokić is probably already best passing big, Teodosić is popular because of passing, and Pistol Pete had Serbian father. Also in handball most attractive player ever, because of attractive passing ability is Croat Ivano Balić.

  110. Jack D says:

    There’s no mention of that anywhere, as far as I can see online.

  111. Sikhs will pay as much as $50,000 for a fake job in Canada with a pathway to permanent residency and citizenship.

    The desire to get to their colonies in white N. America is driving a corrupt trade in student visas, phoney jobs and document fraud.

  112. Escher says:

    It is true, but kinda irrelevant to the topic of the post.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  113. Anonymous[840] • Disclaimer says:

    So . . . Ramanujan needs to be added to the list.

  114. pyrrhus says:

    Indians tend to be vegetarians, and vegetarians don’t have the strength or endurance to be great athletes……so cricket and golf (VJ Singh) are the limit

    • Replies: @Dr Van Nostrand
  115. @Alden

    Sure, but she wasn’t supposed to eat it!

  116. @prosa123

    Oval-shaped Australian Rules Football fields are huge. While some are smaller, like baseball fields there are individual variations, some can be as large as 185 meters x 155 meters.

    What makes baseball fascinating relative to other sports is how much the architecture plays into the game. like golf. The early 20th century ballparks were privately built and owned, and were crammed into tight spaces in urban cores, leading to adorable asymmetries like today’s Fenway (1912).

    Late 20th century stadia– “ballparks” isn’t the right word– have more space, in part due to eminent domain (I believe that’s called “the King’s prerogative” in the mother country), but mostly because they were suburban. The excuse for asymmetry vanished, plus, other sports like football and soccer were done there as well. This was the “cookie-cutter” era, which nobody misses.

    Then they understandibly/cynically tore these down after two or three decades of use, for a new hybrid model– public funding with trivial “naming rights” fees, jammed into dormant industrial zones, and given odd, “retro”, baseball-only dimensions. The football team got its own palace. The baseball is better, the economics still fishy.

    Like much of Amtrak and the National Park Service, it’s subsidized nostalgia. I suppose that’s better than subsidized dispossession!

    Interestingly, in what looked like extravagance in 1970, Kansas City built two stadiums separated by a few yards of parking lot. But that allowed one to be more suited to baseball. It’s easily the best of that era, and may be the only one standing.

    Anyway, after this long digression, my question: do the differencea among Aussie football and cricket grounds play a major role in those sports?

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  117. anon[166] • Disclaimer says:
    @Cowboy Shaw

    Poor field settings from Australia helped.
    Wicketkeepers make poor captains, and our bloke proved it twice in the series.

  118. @Escher

    It is true, but kinda irrelevant to the topic of the post.

    It will be most relevant when a seven-foot import suffers Nawab’s revenge at the foul line and they have to bring out the mops.

    This happens in donkey basketball all the time.

  119. @Reg Cæsar

    I’d argue that the kind of baseball fostered by the despised cookie cutter artificial turf stadiums of the 1970s-1980s was the peak for baseball as entertainment. The current retro stadiums tend to be too small and hard to expand and thus incline the game toward homers.

    • Agree: Autochthon
  120. J.Ross says:

    Weak follow up:
    It’s called Awakening Indians to India and it’s not okay to mock because it’s a compilation of brief schoolchildren’s articles. Although, the “errors” (variations?) are consistent with what I’ve seen from adults …
    Anyway, the “sportsmen” chapter largely bears out this thread: cricketers, billiards geometrists, tennis players, a token nod to futbol, one race car driver, one chessman, and one weightifter but (ninetiesishly enough) she’s a female.

  121. @Steve Sailer

    Camden Yards in Baltimore was the first of the “retro” stadiums. They set up the fences so Cal Ripken would hit a lot of HR’s. Its 365 to the power alleys which is a joke. They have an otherwise great facility but the park gives up so many cheap home runs its not even really baseball.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  122. @William Badwhite

    The Baltimore Orioles pitching staff this year gave up some colossal record number of home runs.

    I presume it’s hard to adjust the fences in most of the retro parks, which were built to put spectators close to the action. Now they are putting up translucent netting way down the foul lines to keep spectators from being killed by foul balls.

  123. Tony says:
    @Dr Van Nostrand

    No way Jose. Northwest India was part of British India who invented the martial races theory. As far as the Afgans being hopeless, ask the Russians about that. They spent the 80’s trying to subdue the country. They pulled out in defeat. We’re still there after 18 years.

    • Replies: @Dr Van Nostrand
  124. @Tony

    You simply dont know anything. The martial races theory was invented to reward those who were the most faithful servants of the empire. It had very little to do with their actual martial abilities. Heck the British went so far as to draft the hapless limp wristed Parsees into the army in the belief that their Persian heritage would make them great soldiers hahaha. Any serious scholar of Indian history realizes the joke of the martial race theory. I want you to show me any spirited resistance from Northwest India i.e Punjab, Sindh, Afghan border regions against Greeks,Persians, Scythians, Huns,Muslims all the way to the British which encompasses more than 2500 years . Almost all of which they were under foreign rule. Why cant you give me this information?

    The Afghan intervention of the U.S is a complete joke with Americans fighting with two hands tied behind their back. The problem is more with U.S and its ridiculous military doctrines which prevents it from winning any wars since the mission is impossible. The Russians thoroughly devastated Afghanistan and left it in tatters. They are nowhere as traumatized by Afghanistan as Americans were by Vietnam. Even after they left they was still a pro Soviet puppet President ruling. They left simply due to Ronald Reagan bleeding them dry financially and the PR machine against them which Russians fumbled ineptly . Before the invasion Soviets enjoyed considerable support from Arab/Muslim countries in general. Gorbachev was no Stalin. Stalin dealt with troublesome Central Asians with ease.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    , @Tony
  125. @pyrrhus

    Most south Indians are not vegetarians. North Indians are lacto vegetarians including famous Jat olympian wrestlers and boxers.

  126. @Jonathan Mason

    Most of these Singhs in athletics are not Sikhs. But Jats from Haryana, UP as well as Rajputs and other castes.

  127. @Steve Sailer

    The current retro stadiums tend to be too small and hard to expand and thus incline the game toward homers.

    So it’s bad funding and bad baseball? Maybe they’ll be torn down in another ten or fifteen years to make way for the next fad!

    The early moderns were often notorious pitcher’s parks– Dodger, Shea, the St Louis one, and especially the Astrodome. They depressed the scores and many whined.

    But, hey, in baseball, diversity is a strength. A band box here, an airfield there. Variety is the spice of life.

  128. @Dr Van Nostrand

    There are two major risks in waging war in a place like Afghanistan. One, you might lose. Two, even worse, you might win.

    Look at Detroit– either the city or the industry– and tell me it was on the winning side in 1865 and 1945.

  129. Anon[930] • Disclaimer says:

    This varies by class, and film. You wouldn’t take the whole family to see Manmatha Leelai, for instance.

  130. Tony says:
    @Dr Van Nostrand

    You dont know squat. Even to this day, the punjabis are the largest ethnic group in the Indian military. Also big in the police departments. Also almost all Indian boxers are from Punjab, Haryana, and Rajastan. I’d put my money on these people and the Afgans over any other people in that region.

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