World Wide Warriors: Angola
It would take approximately 23 hours to fly direct from Munich, Germany, to Auckland, New Zealand, and approximately 18 hours to fly direct from Surrey, Canada, to Luanda, Angola.
Such flights don’t exist, but the Hawai’i basketball team has brought players from those cities – and others around the world – together on an island in the Pacific Ocean for the 2012-13 season. This year’s roster includes players from seven different countries, other than the United States. What’s more, the American players on the roster come from six different states.
In an effort to get to know the Warriors, we asked them to share a little bit about their home countries.
First up is senior center Vander Joaquim, who was raised in Luanda, Angola.
Among the interesting tidbits of information from Joaquim: Angola has a lot of minerals and petroleum, which allows it to trade for goods and services from other countries. He also said that soccer is the most popular sport in Angola, and he played it “a little bit – when I used to play with my friends they used to put me as the goalie.”
Joaquim has been a member of Angola’s national team for the past two years, and he said the most popular basketball player in that country’s history is Jean-Jacques da Conceicao, a 6-foot-6 forward who led Angola to seven Africa Championships in the 1980s and 1990s.