Raptors Superfan Nav Bhatia flew across the world to watch Canada at FIBA World Cup

Sep 6 2023, 3:56 pm

Toronto Raptors superfan Nav Bhatia might be best known for appearing at Scotiabank Arena, but he’s popping up all over the globe this week.

Bhatia, a 72-year-old businessman originally from India, has attended nearly every Raptors home game in Toronto since the team’s inception in 1995.

But with the NBA offseason still on for another month before training camps kick off in October, Bhatia found the time to fly across the world to watch Canada make history at the 2023 FIBA World Cup.

With Canada taking on Slovenia in Wednesday’s quarterfinal in Manila, Philippines, Bhatia was parked in his usual courtside spot to catch the action.

Canada Basketball’s official accounts were quick to give a shoutout to Bhatia, who has been one of the most visible faces in growing the sport within the country over the last three decades.

And he got treated to a good match too, with Canada coming away with the 100-89 victory over Slovenia to advance to their first-ever appearance at the FIBA World Cup semifinals.

Once again, it was Shai Gilgeous-Alexander leading the way for Canada with a 31-point effort to lead all scorers and surely impress Bhatia and the other Canadian fans in attendance.

Bhatia, who was honoured back in 2021 at the Pro Basketball Hall of Fame for his dedication to the sport, clearly has never been one to pass up the chance to travel around the globe to check out Canadian talent.

And with Canada qualifying for the 2024 Olympics in men’s basketball earlier in the tournament, maybe we’ll even see him in Paris next summer.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

+ Offside
+ Basketball
+ Raptors
+ Canada