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Thursday, November 19, 2020







The annual NBA draft was held yesterday 18th November, 2020. The ceremony which was originally planned to be held at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York was now conducted at ESPN’s facilities in Bristol, Connecticut and attended via videoconferencing.

Not less than eight (8) young men of Nigeria descent made the draft, in fact, two of them were amongst the top ten. This has never happened before and Oja is happy to inform you that men of direct Igbo ancestry made up most of the super eight.


Meet the Super eight according to positions on the draft pick:



Isaac Okoro


Isaac Okoro (born January 26, 2001) is an American professional basketball player now playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers of the NBA. He played college basketball for the Auburn Tigers.

Okoro was born in Atlanta, Georgia to Nigerian parents Godwin and Gloria who migrated from Nigeria to the United States in the 1980s. Okoro started playing basketball in his local church league.


He is the 5th overall pick.


Onyeka Okongwu
Onyeka Okongwu


Onyeka Okongwu (born December 11, 2000) is an American basketball player who now plays for the Atlanta Hawks of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played college basketball for the USC Trojans.

Okongwu is the son of Nigerian parents, Kate and Mike Okongwu. His mother, who is a registered nurse, moved to the United States from Nigeria with her family in 1999.

Okongwu plays with the number 21 jersey in honor of his brother, who had worn the same number while playing basketball. Okongwu's older brother, Nnamdi, had also played basketball for Chino Hills High School. In 2014, Nnamdi suffered a brain injury in a skateboarding accident and died after spending three days on life support.

 He also has a younger brother, Chukwuemeka, and a younger sister, Chinemya.


He is the 6th overall pick.



Precious Achiuwa
Precious Achiuwa



Precious Achiuwa (born September 19, 1999) is a Nigerian professional basketball player who now plays for the Miami Heat of the NBA.

His parents Donatus and Eunice are both Pentecostal ministers in Port Harcourt Nigeria.

Achiuwa's older brother, God'sgift Achiuwa, played college basketball for St. John's from 2011 to 2014, and his migration to United States on scholarship paved way for Precious to follow. Precious has three other brothers aside God’sgift, they are God'swill, God’slove and Promise, including two sisters, Grace and Peace.

Precious played college basketball for the Memphis Tigers.

Achiuwa was selected with the 20th pick in the 2020 NBA draft by the Miami Heat.

Ezekiel Tobechukwu Zeke Nnaji
Ezekiel Tobechukwu "Zeke" Nnaji



Ezekiel Tobechukwu "Zeke" Nnaji (born January 9, 2001)

Nnaji a music lover, played baseball and soccer before he started playing basketball due to his height. He is also very good with the piano.


Nnaji's father, Alphan, is from Nigeria, while his mother, Janel, is from Minnesota. He has a younger sister, Maya, who plays high school basketball at Hopkins High School.

Nnaji was selected with the 22nd pick in the 2020 NBA draft by the Denver Nuggets.


Udoka Timothy Azubuike
Udoka Timothy Azubuike


Udoka Timothy Azubuike (born 17 September 1999) is a Nigerian basketball player who now plays for the Utah Jazz of the NBA.

Udoka Azubuike is the youngest of five, with two older brothers and two older sisters. His father is deceased, a former police officer. Given birth to in Nigeria, Udoka caught the attention of Basketball Without Borders recruiters and was offered a scholarship to play basketball in the United States despite not playing the game until he was 13. Most of his formative years learning basketball was under the tutelage of Raptors Basketball Academy’s (not the same as the one in the NBA) Head Coach, Coach Charles Ibeziako.

Azubuike was selected with the 27th pick in the first round of the 2020 NBA draft by the Utah Jazz.


Desmond Michael Bane
Desmond Michael Bane


Desmond Michael Bane (born June 25, 1998) is an American basketball player now playing for the Memphis Grizzlies of the NBA.

Banehe started living with his great-grandparents when he was two years old; they raised him in Richmond, Indiana for most of his childhood. He was already age 13, when he discovered that his father, Etieno Ekiko, was a Nigerian and resided in Nigeria.

Bane is the 30th overall pick Selected by the Boston Celtics.


Akinfayoshe Daniel Oturu
Akinfayoshe Daniel Oturu


Akinfayoshe Daniel Oturu (born September 20, 1999) is an American basketball player who now plays for the Los Angeles Clippers of the NBA.

Oturu's parents Francis and Deborah are Nigerians, Francis played table tennis for the Nigerian national team and moved to the United States because of his table tennis career.

Oturu comes from a Christian family. Both of his parents are ministers at a branch of the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Oturu has an older sister, Eunice.

Daniel is the 33rd overall pick selected by the New York Knicks.

Jordan Nwora
Jordan Nwora


Jordan Nwora (born September 9, 1998) is a Nigerian-American basketball player now playing for the Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA.

Jordan was born to a Nigerian father and American mother in Buffalo, New york. His father Alexander Nwora, a basketball coach, influenced Jordan’s basketball career a great deal.

During 2019 FIBA world cup qualifier in 2018, Nwora was called up to be part of the D'Tigers by his father Alexander Nwora who is the head coach of the team. In the 2019 FIBA World cup qualifiers in Lagos, Nwora broke the nation’s highest scoring player record having scored 36 points against Mali, beating Ike Diogu's record of 31 points.

In the 2020 NBA Draft, Nwora was selected with the 45th overall pick by the Milwaukee Bucks

Jordan Nwora is the first son of Alexander Nwora the Erie Community College and Nigerian National Basketball Team Head Coach and Amy Nwora, an American.

During the 2019 FIBA World Cup qualifier in Lagos, Jordan and his father Alexander became the first Nigerian Son and Father to represent a Nigerian national team side at the same time.

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