Basketball and the Asian American Community

A summer Asian basketball tournament in Chinatown’s Columbus Park

Long before Jeremy Lin and Linsanity, basketball has been a favorite pastime of the Asian American community dating as far back as the early 1980s. While Asian Americans may not be the most desirable ethnicity of a potential basketball teammate on the playground (see:, people should not be so quick to dismiss the talent in these players. The rising popularity and availability of youth basketball programs in Asian American communities have helped propel many recreational and streetball players to become successful high school and collegiate athletes. Your typical all-Asian American basketball team consists of four players under 6 feet and one 6+ footer who will play the “center.” Though not intimidating at first glance, they will most likely be scrappy on defense, push the ball whenever they get the chance, draw fouls on aggressive drives to the basket, and shoot the lights out from downtown. Every so often, you will have an Asian kid who throws down a dunk on a breakaway layup.

The New York Times wrote an article about my old basketball team, the New York Rockits, and a recent Asian basketball tournament that they held over the weekend.

For more information on Asian basketball leagues and tournaments in the NYC area, see the below websites:

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