If The USA Team Wants Competition, Then Let Us Have Our Players...
You all already took Olajuwon, Emeka Okafor and Iguodala, if you guys want some competition, you would reject this guys and tell them to play for Nigeria, I have no doubt that Victor Oladipo would go running to the US if they called and reject Nigeria, the Ogwumike sisters are already in the US system, but if you all want some competition you will let us have our player. Forget the European teams, Nigeria already beat them with a disjointed team, Imagine a future Nigerian team with Victor Oladipo, Rasheed Sulamoin, Oriakhi, Mbakwe, Olasewere, Ojo, Stan Okoye and many more in the pipelines, just checkout the talent coming through below with Jahlil Okafor and Semi Ojeleye leading the race, please you need some competition, and these guys can deliver, you have enough players anyways, I bet a D-league select squad will still win the Olympics if put together....
Andre Iguodala was born in Springfield Illinois
Emeka Okafor was born in Houston Texas
Victor Oladipo was born in Upper Marlboro Maryland
Rasheed Sulamoin - Houston Texas
Alex Oriakhi - Lowell Massachusetts
Trevor Mbakwe - St Paul Minnesota
Jahlil Okafor - Fort Smith Arkansas
Semi Ojeleye - Ottawa Kansas
Jamal Olasewere - Silver Spring Maryland
Stan Okoye - Raleigh North Carolina
Im assuming that these players are of nigerian descent, maybe a couple generations removed, maybe first generation, however they were all born in the US making them US citizens.
You also need to remember that the vast majority of the US population is descendent from immigrants. Guys like troy murphy are probably only a generation or two removed from Ireland. I personally am 1 generation removed from Ireland. We went there to visit some family a couple years ago and it was obvious that I wasn't Irish to them, I was american. We may still have the last names of were we came from, but that doesn't reflect our true nationality here in the US.
Spare me the BS, they are all first generation Nigerian, so how do you explain Hakeem Olajuwon, born and bred in Lagos, Nigeria uhh but you guys stole him from us ?...I aint saying they aint US citizens, all I'm saying is that you all already have millions of players to choose from that are third fourth or fifth generations, if you want competition let us have our lost sons back...They are as much Nigerian as they are Americans....
Yeah most people in the US are usually immigrants from another country but will for sure play for the US if given the opportunity. Kyrie decided to not play for Australia where he is a dual citizen for a chance to play for USA in the future. Jahlil Okafor has already been an MVP for their junior team so he most likely won't be playing for Nigeria but USA instead. It would be nice if there was more parity in teams bu not likely since USA will always have access to the most talent.
Now in talking about USA's biggest competition it will probably come from the top European teams and maybe even Nigeria if some of those players you named decide to play for them instead. But potentially their biggest competition could be Canada lol. With Steve Nash running the team and talents like Wiggins, Ennis, Thompson, Pangos, Olynyk, Kabongo etc Canada could be one of USA's biggest competition along with usual powers like Argentina, Spain and Lithuania.
Yeah I like Canada, they on the come up...funny enough Melvin Ejim who plays for Iowa State and was born in Canada played for Nigeria in the summer, we need to get our acts together fast...
Yeah Melvin did choose to play on Nigeria this summer, so really it's more of preference for players who have dual citenzenship and have a choice of where they want to play.
And I was looking at your rankings for 2015...Chris Egi is Canadian don't steal him from us lol
Lol I like Canada, I dont know why you guys are not up there with the US but I see you're starting to put your program together, quite a few Canadian-Nigerians have been on the scene lately as well, Olu Famutimi and Olu Ashaolu....Also the kid at Harvard Agunwa Okolie and another kid Matt Atewe is on the come up, and you have the Natalie Achonwa who is half Nigerian on the female team !!!!...you guys are doing very well....
Always felt that Canada should have been one of the top teams but funding and developing our players have always not been enough and went to hockey. Like hiring Leo Rautins as the head coach with zero coaching experience was just a bad move. Now with Steve nash running the team, Jay Triano back as the head coach and the new talent available Canada has the potential to be one of the best teams in FIBA play.
I didn't mention Olajuwon because he is Nigerian. We all know that. Also as I said before, I AM a first generation Irish American and I can tell you right now I am NOT as Irish as I am American. That place is foreign to me because it is not my home. I would want to play for the country in which I was born, not the place I would have lived if I was born 50 years earlier.
Also this isn't theft, these players can choose to play for Nigeria if they want to.
one more point Iguodala is only half Nigerian, His mom is of African American descent.
So you agree that Olajuwon was stolen, anyways, if you ask some of these players like Oriakhi, Okoye and Olasewere, they will tell you that they are Nigerian first before anything, the Irish culture is not like Nigerian, he have customs and traditions that we follow religiously, we will always feel Nigerian no matter if we are second, third or fourth generation...we dont sell out our culture...
Tell your Nigerian Basketball team to step it up. You see, it is not the USA recruiting these players. It is the players choosing to play for the best basketball country in the world, that of which they were born in.
Your blind nationalism is bordering on European Baller status. But let me make a devils advocate argument on this matter that perhaps will make more sense than your blind jabs at the US.
The NBA is leaps and bounds beyond any other league in the world talent and popularity wise. The players are unbelievably well compensated for playing and because of these factors, elite players and prospects from around the world aspire to play here. This does cause a lot of the more exciting and promising foreign players from around the world to leave their homeland and move to the US.
In essence, while the US sees an influx of foreign talent, the rest of the world sees an exodus. So the question is, how can basketball truly grow in other countries if the most exciting and talented players from these countries are opting to play in the US? there is no easy answer to this question.
The NBA has been trying to spread its product to all corners of the world, but the fact remains that the revenue generated remains almost entirely in the US. So how do other countries generate the hype and revenue necessary to build up their own basketball programs?
So to some degree, I agree that players should play for their countries of origin because that is the only way that basketball within these other countries will gain the exposure it needs to grow and someday compete with the NBA.
But this isn't stealing players. these players are making a choice. Its like choosing between two jobs. Would you rather take a job that offers more pay for your talents, or one that offers substantially less? The answer for most is night and day.
No, you spare ME the BS.
It's not about Team USA letting the players elsewhere. They're not holding the players hostage. If they WANT to represent another country then they can if they qualify.
What a senseless discussion. The kids are born and raised in the US, they are americans, thats the trick since the first settlers arrived in Virginia 500 years ago.
You are senseless to think that the world started and will end in America, dont try and bring history into this because we all know that not all Americans are "settlers".....I have no problems with Americans, you guys are great, but please let's reason before we talk, It's funny how no one can address the Olajuwon situation, I guess he was a settler 500 years ago, smdh...
Olajuwon came to America, as someone who had played very little organised ball, he learned his trade in college and made his living in the American league. Is it not fair to say then he was 100% developed as a basketball player by American's and American system's, therefore he could be considered an "American basketball product". By the time he played for the US he had lived over half his life there, so he would feel loyalties to the US. As a Brit it is the same argument as Luol Deng, he was born in South Sudan and considers himself Sudanese, but because the UK gave him his chance in basketball and contributed to most of his development, Deng feels his basketball commitment lies with the UK not South Sudan, I would presume Olajuwon feels the same.
Lol, dude let me break it down for you, Olajuwon was already a defensive force in Nigeria and Africa, he was already a member of the Nigerian Junior basketball team as he played both handball and basketball when he was at school, there was even a guy that used to school Olajuwon back in Nigeria, his name is Yomi Sangodeyi aka Yomi Basket, he was better than Olajuwon but Olajuwon got the breakthrough, I will credit America for developing his offensive game and giving him the facilities to further his game, but you can never say you guys developed him 100%....lol even in Hakeem's speech during the All Star weekend, he gave a tribute to the Nigerian coach that discovered him....he is 100% Nigerian and he still speaks with the accent...lol....Please get your facts right my friend....lol And please dont bring up Loul Deng, Deng game to the UK around 11 and left at about 13 or 14, he only played for GB because they gave his family a chance to settle, tell me this, why did Deng put up an African shirt in his first all star game instead of GB ?........Didnt the UK try and steal Ben Gordon, Kelenna Azubuike and are host of others lol.. come on son !!!!
Yes genius I did say Deng considers himself South Sudanese not British, he was granted asylum here when the Sudanese civil war broke out, so I think he plays for Britian as thanks for giving him a home when he was desperate. Also Ben Gordon was born in the UK unlike most of the "Nigerian players" you listed. Although I am a big basketball fan I am a realist, I realise the UK needs to poach players from other countries, because Basketball is a minority sport here, kids play Soccer, Rugby, Cricket, Golf, Run Track or Boxing. Think about it in the UK you can get signed by Man u or Chelsea at 15, the kids from the inner cities (London, Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Bristol) are the kids who are good at basketball but they are choosing soccer because you can be a millionaire at 16 years old, the NBA has to wait until aged 19.
Also with Olajuwon he couldn't get minutes at Houston in his freshman year and his development was aided by playing summer matches with Moses Malone, who he credited for a lot of his development.
Look, You dont want to understand. These kids are born and raised in this country, so they are americans, that is the only way this country of hundreds ethnicities can exist or even survive. If You would like to dream your chauvinistic nonsense, dream on, but these kids are pure and simple american. If you would ask all the players on the "nigerian" olympic team where they come from you would be surprised. And stop the nonsense with Hakeem, it was his wish to play for the US in Atlanta, he was not stolen.
Shut the &$#%#&@! up, I knew you'd become the Nigerian EuroBaller.
Besides the points everyone on here has already made about CHOOSING who you play for. Can it be also said that NONE of these players would even make the USA team today in the first place.....?
When Hakeem first came to Houston from Nigeria he was the definition of raw on both offense and defense. People could see he had vast potential due to his athleticism, length and instincts. However, it took him some time under the tutelage of Moses Malone to put it all together, and it was in America that he learned to hone his basketball skills and therefore who he chose to represent in the Olympics. That situation is more similar to a player that you have not mentioned, Serge Ibaka who was born and raised in the Republic of Congo but instead of playing for them he plays for the Spanish national team. Why? Because he really learned how to play basketball when he played professionally in Spain. And no offense but even if Nigeria could get Iguodala, Okafor, and some of these college kids to play for them, your assumption that a core of these players could some how give the USA problems during the Olympics is overly optimistic at best. Just be glad you're not from Greece and that your countrymen actually have a shot at being in the league lol.
Let me tell you the real reason why Hakeem played for America, you can go and ask Hakeem if you see him...Hakeem was already a Junior International with the Nigerian team, during the early 90's he came back home to Nigeria to help out the basketball program, but some ill minded folks in Nigeria took him for granted and used all the money he brought to themselves instead of setting up the program that they where meant to, Hakeem grew frustrated and went back to America pissed off saying that he wanted nothing to to with Nigeria, which I understand, you see those days Hakeem was a hot head and not the Hakeem you know now, years later he came to terms with what happened and has helped out with the Nigerian team, if only those ill minded folks had used the money for the right reasons, he would have played for us....
I also understand that Moses Malone helped his game, I know that, but what I'm saying is that he already had the foundation in Nigeria, he was know in Africa already as a defensive force, dont let the media fool you with their coming to America film tricks...
Additionally, I know that the US are the best in the world, I just want the Nigerian team to be half as good and use the options that they have...
@ alinge - What exactly is your point ? last time I checked, UK try to poach BJ Mullens as well ? My point about Olajuwon was that he started his basketball career in Nigeria and was helped to develop it further in America, he was already a member of the Nigerian team.
@hoopscop - You need to google images for the meaning of chauvinistic and your picture would come up there, I know that they are Americans as well, but believe you me, they are as much Nigerians, go ask any of them that grew up with their parents and they will tell you, the Nigerian culture is different, hence we still pass on our names and follow the tradition, you aint Nigerian so you will never understand or you choose not to understand....there was a reason why Slave traders made African slaves do away with their real names and it is because of issues like these, they knew back then that these guys will trace their roots and go back to their fatherland.....
My point, was to survive in basketball the UK has to poach players and I am realistic to know these players won't be that good like Mullens (british mother) and Gordon (born in London). I'm pretty sure there are some very good NBA players who could track their roots back to Britain, Steve Nash and Ray Allen can for example, but unlike you I realize these players will never play for Britain because they have no chance of winning and have been raised elsewhere. You seem to think if a player has roots in Nigeria he should play for NIgeria.
Lol did you just say Ray Allen Lmao.....dude you need to get your facts right, anyways....My whole point from the get go is that they are as much Nigerians as they are Americans, I know that some of them will get in to the US team, but with more talent coming through, the Nigerian team will be great as well, oh I forgot didnt we beat the GB team last summer ?
It's funny how when someone is a sports celebrity of African descent you all quickly claim them as American or British, but when is something negative like fraud, you are quick to sell them out for Nigerian..lol...smdh
Yes Ray Allen has British roots on his mother's side and spent part of his childhood in Britain, he lived on an army camp in a place called Saxmundham which is literally 5 minutes from where I live. Look I don't care about this nationalism the fact remains America and Britain are rich nations, where poverty ridden African families aspire to move to, for a better standard of life. The children of these families then grow up and aspire to represent these countries in sport, Nigerian-American players basketball will choose USA because they get more fame and chances to win. It is the same reason African-English and African-French soccer players represent England and France, because there is more money and more chance of success.
Also well done at beating GB at basketball, like I said it is a minority sport here, not many people are too bothered about losing a basketball match to Nigeria.
Ray Allen might have British roots, but it aint the same as the Nigerians I mentioned who have Nigerian parents !!!...You talk about Africa being poverty ridden etc, I really wonder why this is ?....Anyways I'm not here to deviate from the main issue, good luck to every team in the world, but it will be a better place if some of you all stop stealing from Africa, all some of you all do is take but never give back unless it aint good enough no more...Go look up Tiffany Ofilli-Porter as well, smh !!!
What are you talking about, as far as I can see Porter holds dual American and British citizenship, has a British Mother and Nigerian Father and grew up in the states, that is the definition of dual nationality. She chose to represent Britain what on earth is wrong with that. Not everyone with Nigerian roots has to represent Nigeria.
My point is that you fail to appreciate where they come from when they are doing well, then you throw around labels like "Africa is poverty ridden"
Porter is from Michigan and has a BRITISH mother, she is not fully Nigerian. This is the last post I will make on this subject, I do not throw around labels and to infer I do frankly disgusts me and insults my intelligence. All I have tried to point out to you, is that nearly everyone's DNA is mix of all nationalities and they have a right to choose who they represent. I will not carry on debating with the "flat earth society" it is a waste of my time.
You can have all of your "Nigerian" players, team USA will still drop them like a bad habit
These über-patriots are such a calamity for their country... Do you guys (Rotela, Euroballer) really think you're promoting your homelands with these rants?
OP, why are you ignoring the fact that players can play for whatever country they're qualified to play for?
This isn't about Team USA hoarding talent, where players are born, if they're first gen or 2nd gen, etc. Bottom line is that the player himself chooses what country they want to represent. All Team USA or Team Nigeria can do is ask. They can't make the players do a damn thing.
Thank You, finally someone with knowledge....
Dude give it up... It was a baseless post to begin with, due to the fact as others have stated that the players do the choosing... not the teams. To further my point (that your point is wrong), what do you have to say about teams like Argentina and Spain??? Those teams have home grown NBA talent from top to bottom, and have been tooth and nail with Team USA for years now. The reason Team Nigeria isn't that good is simply because the home grown talent just isn't that good... Who knows though, there might be a 8 year old Nigerian Lebron and Kobe shooting in the gym as we speak, so don't give up hope yet my friend!
Nice point, but this has got nothing to do with this topic....Yes we need to develop homegrown talent, but it does not help when we have American scouts coming to the country to only take our bigs...
Ok but let's be honest. If these guys were born and raised in Nigeria u think they would have made the NBA? Be realistic these guys owe America because without America they wouldn't be anywhere close to the players they are and being raised in America is what gave them the opportunity to become what they are now. At the end of the day it's your choice who u want to play for. And I'm Canadian, my background is Jamaican but u don't see me mad that Patrick Ewing played for USA
Emm Olajuwon was born and raised in Nigeria, Festus Ezeli was born and raised in Nigeria, the late Yinka Dare was born and raised in Nigeria, Obinna Ekezie was born and raised in Nigeria, Julius Nwosu was born and raised in Nigeria...so your point above is totally invalid, they all played in the NBA and Olajuwon was the greatest center that ever lived...next
The US doesn't need to steal any player from any country. If Olajuwon wanted to play for the US then fine he can be part of the player pool and if he proves he's worthy of a spot on a team then the US will take him.
If he doesn't want to play for the US then fine we'll just go look at all the other centers we have available.
Olajuwon did it by his own choice and it is of no fault of the United States Mens National Team.