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Last:5/24/2018
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Thanasis Antetokounmpo selected the top Nigerian playing abroad in last week's games - May 11, 2018


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THANASIS ANTETOKOUNMPO
Here is the weekly review of the top performing Nigerian players, who play currently abroad.


Thanasis Antetokounmpo
Thanasis Antetokounmpo
   #1. This week's number one is former international small forward Thanasis Antetokounmpo (199-92, currently plays in Greece). He led Panathinaikos to an easy victory against the fifth-ranked AEK (14-11) crushing them 115-85 in a derby game in the Greek A1 on Friday night. Antetokounmpo recorded 12 points in a mere 16 minutes on the court. Panathinaikos Superfoods Athens (25-0) is placed first in the A1. So far his team won all twenty five games in the Regular Season. They will play only one more game in the Regular Season. And that game will be critical. This year Antetokounmpo averages: 8.5ppg, 3.3rpg, 2FGP: 66.7%(70-105), 3FGP: 31.3% and FT: 59.5% in 23 games he played so far. He has a dual citizenship: Nigerian and Greek. Antetokounmpo played for the Nigerian senior national team two years ago.

Josh-Emmanuel Akognon
Josh-Emmanuel Akognon
   #2. Second place goes to former international point guard Josh-Emmanuel Akognon (180-86, college: CS Fullerton, currently plays in Spain). He could not help CB Canarias (16-15) in their last game on Sunday. Despite Akognon's very good performance CB Canarias was defeated 97-92 on the road by the lower-ranked Movil Estudiantes (#11). He was the second best scorer with 17 points (made all of his five free throws). There are only three games left until the end of the Regular Season. So now every game is very crucial. Akognon has relatively good stats this season: 11.0ppg, 1.6apg, 2FGP: 45.0%, 3FGP: 37.0% and FT: 83.3%. He is another player who holds two passports: Nigerian and American. Akognon played for the Nigerian national team in 2016.

Stan Okoye
Stan Okoye
   #3. The Nigerian player who performed third best last week abroad was former international swingman Stan Okoye (198-91, college: VMI, currently plays in Italy). He was not able to help Openjobmetis VA (16-14) in their last game. Despite Okoye's very good performance Openjobmetis VA lost 83-92 in Torino to the lower-ranked (#11) Fiat TO. He was the top scorer with 23 points. Okoye also added 7 rebounds and dished 3 assists in 30 minutes. They ended the series of eight consecutive victories. There are only three games left until the end of the Regular Season. It's Okoye's first season with the team. He has individually a very good year with high stats. Okoye averages: 15.4ppg, 7.4rpg, 1.6apg, 2FGP: 44.2%, 3FGP: 41.0% and FT: 82.1% in 30 games. He has both American and Nigerian nationalities. Okoye played for the Nigerian national team three years ago.

Melvin Ejim
Melvin Ejim
   #4. Forward Melvin Ejim (201-91, college: Iowa St., currently plays in VTB United League) led his Russian team Unics Kazan to a victory over the closely-ranked Zenit (15-8) 99-82 in the VTB United League on Wednesday night. He was MVP of the game. Ejim scored 16 points, had 5 rebounds, passed 3 assists and added 3 blocks. It was the game of the round between two top 4 ranked teams. Unics Kazan (22-2) is placed first in the VTB United League. It was his team's seventh consecutive victory in a row. The Regular Season already ended in the VTB United League. Ejim's overall stats this season are: 8.4ppg, 5.2rpg and 1.8apg. He also holds two passports: Canadian and Nigerian. Ejim used to play for the Nigerian national team back in 2012.

Obi Emegano
Obi Emegano
   #5. International guard Obi Emegano (190-93, college: ORU, currently plays in France) was the main contributor in a SPO Rouen's victory against the closely-ranked STB Le Havre (9-13) 89-85 in the French ProB (second division) on Friday night. He was the best player in that game. Emegano recorded 29 points (!!!), 7 rebounds and 4 assists in 39 minutes. SPO Rouen Basket (16-17) is placed eighth in the ProB. His team will play only one more game in the Regular Season. Emegano has very impressive stats this year: 17.5ppg, 3.0rpg, 1.9apg and 1.1spg in 33 games. He has Nigerian and British nationalities. Emegano plays currently for the Nigerian national team.

Ben Uzoh
Ben Uzoh
   #6. Point guard Ben Uzoh (191-88, college: Tulsa, currently plays in Mexico) was the major contributor in a Caballeros de Culiacan's victory against one of league's weakest teams Pioneros Los Mochis (5-15) 85-80 in the Mexican CIBACOPA in Saturday night's game. He recorded a double-double by scoring 20 points and getting 10 rebounds. Uzoh also added 3 assists. Caballeros de Culiacan (10-8) is placed sixth in the CIBACOPA. The Regular Season already ended. This season Uzoh has very high stats. He averages: 15.8ppg, 6.7rpg, 4.8apg and 2.2spg. Uzoh holds both American and Nigerian passports. He is an international player who is currently on the senior Nigerian National Team roster.

Solomon Alabi
Solomon Alabi
   #7. Former international center Solomon Alabi (216-88, college: Florida St., currently plays in Japan) was not able to secure a victory for Fukushima (38-22) in their last game. Despite Alabi's very good performance the second-placed Fukushima (38-22) were badly defeated 98-82 at home by the second-ranked Cyberdyne IR in the East group. He was the top scorer with 26 points. Alabi also added 7 rebounds in 25 minutes. The Regular Season already ended. This year Alabi has relatively solid stats: 13.6ppg, 8.5rpg, 1.4apg and 1.5bpg in 58 games. He used to play for the Nigerian national team five years ago.

Emmanuel Omogbo
Emmanuel Omogbo
   #8. Forward Emmanuel Omogbo (203-95, college: Colorado St., currently plays in Italy) contributed to a VL Pesaro's surprising victory against the league leader Umana Venezia (23-7) 77-74 in the Italian Serie A on Sunday night. Omogbo scored 17 points, grabbed 7 boards, passed 3 assists and added 6 steals. Consultinvest VL Pesaro (8-22) is placed second from the bottom (#15) in the Serie A. The Regular Season already ended. Omogbo has reliable stats this season: 10.9ppg, 8.9rpg, 1.3apg and 1.7spg. He holds both American and Nigerian passports. Omogbo plays currently for the Nigerian national team.

Ike Ofoegbu
Ike Ofoegbu
   #9. An experienced former international power forward Ike Ofoegbu (205-84, college: SMU, currently plays in Puerto Rico) couldn't help Capitanes (1-2) in their last game. Despite his very good performance Capitanes lost 81-95 in Bayamon to the leading Vaqueros. Ofoegbu was the top scorer with 17 points. He also added 6 boards, handed out 3 passes and blocked 4 shots (was perfect 5-for-5 from the free throw line) in 31 minutes. But this is still an early stage of the season and everything may happen. Ofoegbu's stats this year are: 12.3ppg, 8.7rpg, 2.0apg and 1.3bpg in three games. He holds both American and Nigerian passports. Ofoegbu used to play for the Nigerian national team two years ago.

Ike Nwamu
Ike Nwamu
   #10. Guard Ike Nwamu (196-93, college: UNLV, currently plays in Greece) couldn't help Lavrio (14-11) in their last game. Despite his good performance Lavrio lost 87-98 in Patras to the higher-ranked (#3) Promitheas. Nwamu recorded 13 points in 23 minutes. His team will play only one more game in the Regular Season. This year Nwamu averages only 9.0ppg in four games. He is an international player who is currently on the senior Nigerian National Team roster.

   #11. Former international power forward Trevor Mbakwe (207-89, agency: Pensack Sports, college: Minnesota, currently plays in Italy) couldn't help Fiat TO in their game against Germani BR in the Italian Serie A. Despite his good performance on Sunday night Mbakwe recorded a double-double by scoring 10 points and getting the same number of rebounds. Mbakwe averaged so far 12.8ppg and 7.6rpg. He holds both American and Nigerian passports. Despite Mbakwe played previously for the USA university national team, he is currently in the Nigerian national team roster.

   #12. Former international power forward Olaseni Lawal (208-86, agency: 3Eye, college: Wayne St., MI, currently plays in Italy) managed to help Scandone Avellino in a victory against the ninth-ranked Virtus Bologna 70-64 in the Italian Serie A on Sunday night. He scored only 4 points and grabbed 4 rebounds in 16 minutes. This year Lawal's overall stats are: 3.9ppg, 7.3rpg and 1.8apg in nine games. He holds both American and Nigerian passports. Lawal attended previously one of camps at Eurobasket Summer League on his way to pro basketball. Lawal used to play for the Nigerian national team back in 2016.

   #13. Former international center Ekenechukwu Ibekwe (207-85, college: Maryland, currently plays in France) couldn't help Chalons-Reims in their game against JDA Dijon in the French ProA. Despite his very good performance in Friday night's game He scored 17 points and grabbed 7 rebounds. Ibekwe's total stats this season are: 8.5ppg and 4.1rpg. He holds both American and Nigerian passports. Ibekwe used to play for the Nigerian national team two years ago.

   #14. International center Jeleel Akindele (216-83, agency: BeoBasket, college: Chicago St., currently plays in Puerto Rico) is a teammate of previously mentioned Ike Ofoegbu. But that was another game of his team in Puerto Rican BSN which we would like to mention. Akindele helped Capitanes win their game against one of league's weakest teams Atleticos 97-87. He had a double-double by scoring 14 points and getting 10 rebounds in 23 minutes. This year Akindele's total stats are: 9.3ppg and 8.0rpg in three games. He plays currently for the Nigerian national team.

   #15. International power forward Talib Zanna (206-90, also represented by 3Eye, college: Pittsburgh, currently plays in Israel) helped Ironi Nes-Ziona win their game against the closely-ranked Bnei Hasharon 104-93 in the Israeli Winner League on Sunday night. Zanna scored 16 points and grabbed 9 rebounds. Zanna averaged so far 13.0ppg, 8.3rpg and 1.3spg. He is also in the roster of the Nigerian national team.


The list of other players, who all have Nigerian passport but never been selected to any of Nigerian national teams:

   #1. Michael Ojo (216-C-93, college: Florida St., currently plays in Serbia) led FMP to a victory over the second-ranked Partizan (7-1) 87-82 in a derby game in the Serbian KLS in Monday night's game. He was MVP of the game. Ojo had a double-double by scoring 21 points and getting 17 rebounds in 25 minutes; quite an impressive performance considering it's only his third season in pro basketball. It was the game of the round between two top 3 ranked teams in Group B. FMP Beograd (7-1) is placed first. It was his team's sixth consecutive victory in a row. There are only two games left until the end of the Second Stage. So now every game will be critical. Ojo has relatively good stats this year: 12.5ppg and 7.0rpg in four games he played so far.

   #2. Micheal Eric (210-C-88, college: Temple, currently plays in Turkey) was the major contributor in Darussafaka's victory against the closely-ranked Anadolu Efes (21-8) 79-67 in a derby game in the Turkish BSL last Sunday. He recorded 16 points and grabbed 9 rebounds. Darussafaka Dogus Istanbul (18-11) is placed fifth in the BSL. It was his team's third consecutive victory in a row. They will play only one more game in the Regular Season. And now that game is very crucial. It's Eric's first season with the team. This year Eric averages: 8.7ppg and 5.8rpg.

   #3. Moses Kingsley (208-F-94, college: Arkansas, currently plays in Belgium) was the main contributor in a Antwerp Giants' victory against the league outsider Liege Basket (6-27) 91-79 in the Belgian Euromillions League in Sunday night's game. He was the best player in that game. Kingsley scored 21 points, grabbed 7 rebounds and dished 3 assists in 23 minutes; not bad, considering it's only his third season in pro basketball. Telenet Giants Antwerp (18-8) is placed first in the Euromillions League. There are only two games left until the end of the Regular Season. This year Kingsley has relatively solid stats: 11.0ppg, 6.3rpg, 1.3apg and 1.3bpg in 32 games. He has a dual citizenship: Nigerian and American.

   #4. Tonye Jekiri (213-C-94, college: Miami, FL, currently plays in Belgium) contributed to Oostende's victory against the closely-ranked Okapi Aalstar (21-12) 79-73 in the Belgian Euromillions League last Friday. Jekiri recorded a double-double by scoring 16 points and getting 11 rebounds. It was the game of the round between two top 4 ranked teams. Telenet BC Oostende (29-4) is placed first in the Euromillions League. There are only three games left until the end of the Regular Season. Jekiri's overall stats this season are: 9.2ppg, 7.4rpg and 1.3apg.

   #5. Weyinmi Rose (196-G/F-86, college: Providence, currently plays in Argentina) contributed to Atenas' victory against the 14th-ranked Olimpico de La Banda (15-23) 103-92 in the Argentinian LigaA last Sunday. He recorded 19 points and added 8 assists. Atenas Cordoba (27-11) is placed third in the LigaA. Rose averaged so far 11.1ppg, 2.1rpg and 4.1apg. He is another player who holds two passports: Nigerian and Jamaican.

   #6. Rasheed Sulaimon (193-G-94, college: Maryland, currently plays in France) contributed to a JDA Dijon's victory against the 14th-ranked Chalons-Reims 92-79 in the French ProA on Friday night. Sulaimon scored 15 points and grabbed 4 rebounds in 33 minutes. Sulaimon averaged so far 12.2ppg, 2.4rpg and 2.8apg in 28 games. He has both American and Nigerian nationalities. Despite Sulaimon's Nigerian passport, he previously played for the USA U19 national team and is probably not eligible to play for the Nigerian team.

   #7. Princeton Onwas (198-G-93, college: San Jose St., currently plays in Australia) helped South West Metro Pirates win their game against the 15th-ranked Toowoomba Mountaineers 84-74 in the Australian State League (second division) in Saturday night's game. Onwas was the top player that evening. He recorded a double-double by scoring 37 points and getting 13 rebounds. Onwas has individually a very good season with high stats. He averages: 20.0ppg, 8.7rpg and 1.3spg. Onwas also holds two passports: Nigerian and American.

   #8. George Williams (198-G-90, college: Wayland Baptist, currently plays in Mexico) could not help Pioneros Los Mochis (5-15) in their last game. Despite his very good performance Pioneros Los Mochis was edged 106-104 on the road by the higher-ranked (#4) Aguilas Doradas de Durango. Williams was the top scorer with 28 points. He also added 4 rebounds and dished 3 assists in 42 minutes. Williams has very impressive stats this year: 17.3ppg, 4.2rpg and 3.1apg in 12 games. He holds both American and Nigerian passports. Worth to mention Williams played also at Eurobasket Summer League, which helped him get the job in pro basketball.

   #9. O.D. Anosike (203-F/C-91, agency: Alti Sport, college: Siena, currently plays in Spain) was not able to help Real Betis (7-25) in their last game on Wednesday. Despite Anosike's good performance the bottom-ranked Real Betis was defeated 104-89 in Madrid by the leading Real. He recorded a double-double by scoring 14 points and getting the same number of rebounds. Anosike averaged so far 10.3ppg and 6.2rpg. He holds both American and Nigerian passports.

   #10. Olaniyi Akingkube (208-C, college: N.Carolina A&T, currently plays in Mexico) is a teammate of previously mentioned George Williams and both played together in the last Mexican CIBACOPA game. Akingkube was not able to secure a victory for Pioneros Los Mochis (5-15) in their last game on Wednesday. Despite his very good performance Pioneros Los Mochis was edged 106-104 in Durango by the higher-ranked Aguilas Doradas de (#4). Akingkube recorded a double-double by scoring 19 points and getting 11 rebounds. Akingkube averaged so far 12.4ppg, 7.7rpg, 1.9apg and 1.1bpg. He holds both American and Nigerian passports.

  




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