Conglolese NBA star Emmanuel Mudiay

CCTV News

Conglolese NBA star Emmanuel Mudiay.00_01_53_04.Still001

As the U.S. National Basketball Association’s regular season winds to a close, a young athlete who grew up in Africa and played in China is making a name for himself in the world’s toughest league with his play in Colorado.

CCTV’s Hendrik Sybrandy reports from Denver.

Conglolese NBA star Emmanuel Mudiay

Conglolese NBA star Emmanuel Mudiay

As the U.S. National Basketball Association's regular season winds to a close, a young athlete who grew up in Africa and played in China is making a name for himself in the world's toughest league with his play in Colorado. CCTV's Hendrik Sybrandy reports from Denver.

It’s been a difficult year for the N.B.A.’s Denver Nuggets; The team has lost more games than it’s won. But one player, who wears uniform number zero, has given Nuggets fans real reason for hope.

His name is Emmanuel Mudiay. The 20-year-old basketball player is finishing up his first professional season in the U.S.

Mudiay was born in what’s now the Democratic Republic of Congo. His mother fled the country and brought her family to the U.S., where his brothers taught him a thing or two on the basketball court.

“They always pushed me around, try to make me tougher,” Mudiay said. “I used to go back crying to my mom, telling her they’re hurting me and stuff like that, but that’s what made me what I am today as a basketball player.”

Emmanuel was just 18 years-old when he signed with a pro team in Guangdong, China. The culture and the food, were all very different then.

“Thought it was going to be like Panda Express, but it was nothing like Panda Express.”

Despite the many culture differences he had to get used to, Emmanuel came to appreciate his Chinese fans.