A Filipino making it to the NBA was “an impossible dream come true” for Raymond Townsend.
Townsend was a first round pick in the 1978 NBA draft by the Golden State Warriors.
Townsend’s mother is from Balayan, Batangas Province, Philippines but Raymond was born in San Jose, California.
The American-Filipino played two full season’s with the Warriors and a quarter of a season with the Indiana Pacers. During his short NBA career, Townsend average just under five points game in 13 minutes.
Townsend remains the first and only Filipino to ever play in the NBA.
A little known fact about Townsend; during his tenure at UCLA Townsend was one of the best baseball players in the country. It came down to choosing the MLB or the NBA, Townsend chose the NBA because it was a guaranteed contract out of college.
With the growing talent of basketball players in the Philippines, one can only assume that in the very near future we will see the next Filipino step foot on an NBA court.