Top 5 NBA Players of Nigerian Descent

It’s hard to go to any country in the world and not find Nigerians there so it makes sense there will be NBA players of Nigerian descent. Being the most populous black nation in the world, Nigerians are well known and some have migrated to many countries of the world in search of greener pastures. Some go to these countries, marry a native a start procreating, the chain continues, the bloodline.

The NBA is the biggest basketball league in the world and you would be foolish to bet against not having a Nigerian in this American league; certainly. In this post, we will list for you the 5 biggest NBA players of Nigerian descent currently.

NBA Players of Nigerian Descent

Giannis Antetokounmpo

Who else than the current NBA MVP? Gannis needs to introduction. Born in the small Greek town of Sepolia to Nigerian immigrant parents, the 6ft11 Milwaukee Bucks forward is the first player in NBA history to finish a regular season in the top 20 in total points.

nba players of nigerian descent 2019
Giannis Antetokounmpo with the Bucks

Giannis had a defining moment in his career last season and holds the NBA’s MVP title, he was also the star cover for NBA2K18. From rags to riches, Giannis went from sharing a pair of shoes with his brothers to having his own Nike line signature sneakers. Giannis represents Greece naturally and proudly identifies with Nigeria. The Greek Freak, they call him.

Victor Oladipo

Vic is an NBA player with the Indiana Pacers. Oladipo is a Nigerian Yoruba name but according to his Wikipedia page, his father is from Sierra Leone, and his mum is a Nigerian immigrant.

In his first season with the Indiana Pacers, Oladipo won the NBS Most Improved Player Award. Oladipo had an injury-ravaged season in the just-concluded NBA season but he still made it to the Eastern Conference All-Star reserve squad.

Andre Iguodala

Iguodala has an African-American mother and a Nigerian father. He currently plays for the Memphis Grizzles and identifies as an American. From 2013-2019, Iguodala played for the Golden State Warriors alongside. Steph Curry where he enjoyed a successful career.

Amongst many of his accolades include NBA All-Star team 2012, 2x NBA All-Star Defensive Team, NBA MVP in 2015, and 3x NBA Champions with the. Golden State Warriors.

Josh Okogie

Josh Okogie was born in Lagos and Identifies as Nigerian-American. He got drafted into the NBA last year and plays for the Minnesota Wolves.

Okogie is still very young and had an impressive rookie season with the. Wolves, bigger things are expected of him in the new season.

Deandre Ayton

Just like Okogie, Ayton made it to the NBA draft 2018 with the Phoenix Suns. He represents the Bahamas though born to a Nigerian Father and a Bahamian mother of Jamaica descent.

Ayton made it to the NBA All-Rookie First Team for the 2018-2019 season and bigger things are expected of him in the new season.


There you have it; these are the biggest NBA players of Nigerian descent. Currently. Bar Andre Iguodala, the other players are still young and will make waves for years in the Northern American basketball league.

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