During the NBA halftime show at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Sunday, Nigerian superstars Tems, Burna Boy, and Rema delivered a groundbreaking Afrobeats-themed performance.
The halftime show occurs between the second and third quarters of NBA basketball games, allowing teams and players to rest and strategize while celebrity artists perform.
For 71 years, the halftime show has featured the best musical talent from around the world, making it one of the largest musical events during a sports game, second only to the Superbowl halftime show.
The NBA All-Stars Halftime show takes place every February during the All-Stars game.
Pascal Siakam, a Cameroonian-born NBA player for the Toronto Raptors, introduced the incredible lineup of Tems, Burna Boy, and Rema.
Despite being internationally acclaimed stars, they have loyal fanbases in the United States and worldwide. This was the first time a Nigerian artist performed at the NBA halftime show, making it a historic event.
The halftime show was a lengthy celebration of Afrobeats, which is rapidly becoming Nigeria’s biggest export.
The catchy tunes of Nigeria’s A-listers captivated most of the NBA All-Stars, causing them to skip locker room time and remain courtside to watch and record the live performance.
In recent years, the NBA has sought to diversify globally by including players from various continents, particularly Africa, Asia, and Europe.
Celebrating African contributions to the league and its partnership with FIBA in establishing the Basketball Africa League in 2019, the NBA decided to honor African musical accomplishments during the 72nd All-Stars game.