Born and brought up in Seattle, Washington, US,Orlando MagicplayerPaolo Bancherois of mixed ethnicity. He is an African-American from his mother s side and Italian from his father s. Because of his Italian descent, Paolo holds Italian citizenship.
As for his parents, Mario Banchero and Rhonda Smith-Banchero, both are sports athletes who met while studying at the University of Washington. His father, Mario, played football while his mother, Rhonda, was a basketball player for the Washington Huskies women s team. Playing for four years, she averaged 15.5 points per game along with three NCAA playoff appearances. She further went on to play professionally in the ABL for two teams for a season. In 2000 she then got her WNBA draft by the Sacramento Monarchs and later became a coach.
Behind the story of last night s No. 1 overall pick Paolo Banchero and his mother Rhonda Smith-Banchero with @angela_rye! pic.twitter.com/Rar7vhujEJ
ESPN (@espn) June 24, 2022
Besides his parents, details on his siblings Mia Banchero and Lio Banchero are unknown. His cousin named Chris Banchero from his paternal side is also a basketball player studying at O Dea High School and is currently playing for the Philippine Basketball Association. Having a family background in sports, Paolo took the same path making his career in sports.
Paolo Banchero set to make his debut in EuroBasket for Team Italy
Like his parents, Paolo grew up becoming both a basketball and football player. Getting his NBA draft in 2022 by the Orlando Magic he simultaneously got selected in 2020 to play for the EuroBasket 2022 for Italy. His willingness to play for the Italian team linked him with his ancestors, who back in the 1990s immigrated from Italy to the U.S. to work as coal miners. Getting the Italian Citizenship was a plus point for him providing him the chance to play for the team.
Paolo Banchero is on the long list of NT for EuroBasket 2022 Qualifiers.
Italy, already qualified, will play in Tallinn (Estonia) from 23/11 to 30/11. pic.twitter.com/rfuqpRLVRh
Iacopo De Santis (@IacopoDeSantis) October 24, 2020
Entering into the 24-man Azzurri squad for theFIBA EuroBasket 2022Qualifiers, Paolo was quite excited.Italy gave me a chance I couldn t refuse, to play at the senior level. It s a team of pros, and being with them will help me grow a lot. I m proud to wear the Azzurri jersey. I will never forget when I received it for the first time. It is framed in my room. I m proud to be playing for Italy and proud about the heritage of my family.he said. However, he hasn t made his national debut yet and is currently playing in the NBA.
Paolo Banchero s rookie year was SPECIAL
40 games scoring at least 20 points
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR pic.twitter.com/4fUJzWQhep
Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) April 25, 2023
Selected in the first overall pick, Paolo made his debut with the Orlando Magicscoring 27 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 blocks. Playing 72 games, he is currently averaging 20 points, 6.9 rebounds, and 3.7 assists per game which earned him the Kia MVP Rookie of the Year 2022-23. Paolo s growth in such a short time is quite impressive and is benefiting the team a lot. His national debut however awaits for Team Italy.