Satnam Singh Bhamara is 7 feet 2 inches tall. His shoe size is 20. His hands are 11-and-a-half inches long. The Punjab-born man has used his size to his advantage and how. He is a basketball player who has made history as the first India-born player to be drafted into the NBA. The documentary One in a Billion, available on Netflix India, tracks his journey from Ballo Ke, a village in Punjab, to IMG Academy in Florida and finally to the Barcalys Centre in New York where he was the 52nd player to be drafted chosen by Dallas Mavericks.
“My father told me, ‘Satnam, now you have only three things, basketball, study and sleep’,” says Bhamara whose father encouraged him to take up the sport when he was 10 – (He was already five feet nine inches tall by then) – and packed him off to Ludhiana Basketball Academy. Four years later, Bhamara’s imposing presence combined with his talent and hard work sees him catch the eyes of recruits of the renowned IMG Academy in Florida. From wearing two shoes sown together in Ludhiana (shoes in his size are hard to find in India), Bhamara gets basketball sneakers in his size and more importantly access to top notch physical training and coaching at the US academy.