Update: Based on reports by official sources, we shared here that Juan Toscano-Anderson was the first player of Mexican descent to win an NBA title but he comes after Mark Aguirre, who won two championships with the Detroit Pistons in 1989 and 1990. We still celebrate Juan and the representation he not only brought to this year’s finals but brings to the NBA.
Golden State Warriors forward Juan Toscano-Anderson has become the first player of Mexican descent to win an NBA championship.
The 27-year-old Oakland native won the title with his hometown team Thursday night (June 16). The Warriors beat the Boston Celtics in Game 6 of the NBA Finals 103-90 to win the series 4-2.
During the trophy presentation ceremony, Juan Toscano-Anderson held the Mexican flag proudly after the coveted Larry O’Brien championship trophy was handed to the team’s owners. This year’s championship marks the fourth one in eight years that the Warriors have won. In those eight years, the Warriors have been to the NBA Finals six times.
Later, Toscano-Anderson can be seen chanting “MVP” from the stage when his teammate Stephen Curry was named Most Valuable Player of the NBA Finals for the first time in his career.
“Everybody on this stage has a part in this – from the front office, coaches, players,” Curry said.
Toscano-Anderson’s road to an NBA Championship was a challenging one. He played four years for Marquette University before going undrafted in the 2015 NBA Draft. He then started playing professional basketball in Mexico’s Liga Nacional de Baloncesto Profesional. He also played in the Liga Profesional de Baloncesto in Venezuela and for the Santa Cruz Warriors in the NBA’s G League.
In February 2020, Toscano-Anderson was signed by the Warriors for three years. His deal was converted to a full-time contract in May 2021. Earlier this year, he participated in the 2022 NBA Slam Dunk Contest at the All-Star Game wearing a pair of customized Nike tennis shoes designed to look like the Mexican flag.
“I never imagined playing for the Warriors,” Toscano-Anderson said during an ESPN feature on him earlier this year. “It’s just a dream come true.”
Watch the Warriors’ entire 2022 trophy presentation ceremony below.