Nine-time NBA All-Star Gary Payton tipped off the festivities and the inaugural NBA Chinese New Year Celebration Season of Giving initiative in China on Friday with a basketball clinic with underprivileged students in southeast China's Fujian Province.
Payton also had traditional Chinese New Year meal - dumplings - with the students at the Ankai School in Lianjiang County.
"I am so happy that I can come to such a remote place to see the students playing basketball," said Payton.
Payton will next head for Shanghai to visit the children at the NBA Yao Basketball Club, conduct a basketball clinic for a group of Special Olympics athletes and share in the joy of the holiday by giving out special NBA Chinese New Year gifts.
Payton's tour is part of the NBA tribute from Feb. 20 to March 5 with its biggest ever Chinese New Year celebration.
Added information by Yutang:
According to news reports, NBA China donated a basketball playground to Ankai School during this Payton trip. It will also give away thousands of basketballs to students all over China.
Original title by Xinhua: NBA star Payton starts his China tour with clinic in Fujian