A 22-year-old man named Sim Bhullar became the first man of Indian descent to play in an NBA game on Tuesday.
Bhullar, who was born in Ontario, Canada, entered the game for the Sacramento Kings with around 16 seconds left in the fourth quarter of the team’s 116-111 victory against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
"It was a great feeling and I'm happy to be kind of an ambassador," Bhullar later said, according to BBC. "Hopefully more kids growing up will see there's a player of Indian descent on the court and we can get a couple more Indian NBA players."
The 7’5”, 360-pound Bhullar signed a 10-day contract with the Sacramento Kings last week. Before that, he played college basketball at New Mexico State before entering the NBA’s development league.
Bhullar signs his contract with the Kings.
Kings teammate Omri Casspi told reporters he gave Bhullar some advice for playing in the NBA as a representative of so many people. Casspi’s in a unique position to offer some advice too: He himself was the first Israeli-born player in the NBA.
"I told him to enjoy the ride," Casspi said, according to ESPN. "You got 2 billion Indians looking up to you. Be the best role model you can be and have fun with it."