New York Knicks' superstar power forward Amar'e Stoudemire has joined a group in talks to buy Israeli basketball club Hapoel Jerusalem, he tweeted on Friday.
Stoudemire tweeted that he is "excited to join the partnership that is giving back to the city of Jerusalem by offering the Hapoel basketball team a fresh start."
Ori Allon, who is leading the group bidding for Hapoel, tweeted , "Proud to partner with @Amareisreal & others on building a promising future for the Hapoel Jerusalem basketball club."
Stoudemire, who says he has Jewish roots on his mother's side, visited Israel in July, 2010
, telling The Jerusalem Post
that "The Holy Land has always been high on my list of places to visit, and when this opportunity arose, I wasn’t going to push it off any longer.”
“I have been aware since my youth that I am a Hebrew through my mother, and that is something that has played a subtle but important role in my development,” he went on.
“I have never hid my spiritual roots,” he said. “They just weren’t something that came under the spotlight.”
Stoudemire added that he had always channeled his spirituality through the way he played basketball.
“I am proud to be a Hebrew and embrace my Jewish background,” he said.
Hapoel Jerusalem was swept out of the BSL semifinals
by rivals Maccabi Tel Aviv earlier this month.Uriel Sturm contributed to this report.