The Miami Heat Center Precious Achiuwa is one of about 35 players to play for Nigeria in the Tokyo Olympics, due to begin in Japan on July 23, according to Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press.
Nigeria, led by the Golden State Warriors assistant coach Mike Brown, is starting a trial camp this weekend in Oakland, California. The group of players must finally be reduced to a final roster of 12 before the start of the games.
In addition to Achiuwa, who was born in Port Harcourt, other NBA players are also expected to make the final roster, including Al-Farouq Aminu, Chimezi Metu, Josh Okogie and Zeke Nnaji.
The preliminary round in basketball with 12 teams in three groups begins on July 25th and lasts until August 2nd. The quarter-finals start on August 3rd and consist of the two best teams from each group from the preliminary round.
The semi-finals will take place on August 5th, the gold and bronze games on August 7th.
Nigeria qualified for the Olympics after becoming the best African country in the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup. They will open the game in Group B, which also includes Australia and two other teams to be determined after the qualifying tournament.
The presence of Nigerian-born or Nigerian-born players in the NBA was on display this year. Seven players, including Achiuwa, were drafted last year who either come from the country or have at least one parent born there.
Achiuwa has just finished a strong rookie season with the Heat, averaging five points and 3.4 rebounds in 61 games. He scored three double doubles, including 23 points and 10 rebounds in his career in the regular season finale on May 16.
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