Kids compete in a basketball bouncing match at a community in Boxing County of Binzhou, east China's Shandong Province, Aug. 5, 2016. (Xinhua/Chen Bin)

The Chinese Basketball Association league issued an open letter to kids on Children’s Day, which encourages them to live a better life through playing basketball.

“Every day can be Children’s day as long as we have basketball. We really hope basketball can become your life-time partner,” read the letter.

Kids were encouraged to stay at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, and their regular basketball activities were also impacted.

In order to make basketball available, the CBA released official basketball training courses which included video lessons from local stars such as Yao Ming, Guo Ailun and Wang Shaojie.

“We wish you a happy holiday and hope that every one of you can grow up healthy, safe and happy,” said the letter.

Stephon Marbury’s Beijing Royal Fighters scouted two U.S.-based Chinese players during recent training sessions held during the CBA suspension.

Beijing has been preparing for a possible restart of the 2019-2020 CBA season, which was suspended since February 1 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Marbury, head coach for Beijing, watched teenage players Qu Junxuan and Liao Sanning in several training sessions.

Qu Junxuan is currently studying at California State University, Northridge. The 20-year-old center has also attracted interest from CBA champions Guangdong Tigers.

Liao Sanning, 19, started playing high-school league in U.S. last year. He is considered as one of the best Chinese point guards at his age.

Beijing Royal Fighters, who signed a 3-year contract with Marbury last June, rank eighth in the current CBA standings.

Qingdao Eagles center Liu Chuanxing has been named in the Chinese Basketball Association’s (CBA) Most Improved Five of the Week.

Liu, who celebrates his 23rd birthday on Thursday, posted 16.7 points, 13.7 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per match over the past week.

Despite playing without overseas players, Qingdao ranks eighth after the regular season to reach the playoffs for the first time in five years. They will square off against the Shandong Heroes for a spot in the last eight.

Sichuan Blue Whales’ Jing Hanyi and He Siyu from the Tianjin Pioneers took up spots in the forward position of the weekly most improved roster.

Jing averaged 15.3 points, 7.7 boards and 1.0 steal, while He shot 56.3 percent from the field to register an average of 17.7 points and 3.0 steals.

The two berths in the guard position went to Shandong Heroes’ Zhang Hui and Shenzhen Aviators’ Bai Haotian.

Zhang logged 10.7 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.0 steals per contest over the week. Bai averaged 12.7 points and 3.7 assists thanks to a 70.8 percent field goal shooting performance.

The CBA announced the Most Improved First-Team after the league’s restart, including He, Bayi Rockets center Zou Yuchen, Shanxi Loongs guard Zhang Hanjun and Zhejiang Golden Bulls backcourt duo of Lu Wenbo and Cheng Shuaipeng.

Liu and Jing were named in the Most Improved Second-Team, which also included Xinjiang Flying Tigers’ Qi Lin, Sichuan’s Yuan Tangwen and Guangdong Southern Tigers guard Xu Jie.

Nanjing Monkey Kings guard Joseph Young was the winner of the Best International Player after the league’s resumption with an average of 43.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists. He scored 74 points, the third-highest personal single-game total in CBA history, against Shandong on July 13.