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View Full Version : When will we see an NBA player from Angola?



sinobball
05-12-2011, 04:14 PM
Among the top 25 NTs (according to FIBA's ranking) the only country that never produced a single NBA player is Angola (ranked 13th). Even Iran with no diplomatic relationship with the US has an NBA player. When will we see an Angolan in the NBA? Is it because of lack of exposure? I doubt Angolan players don't want to play in the NBA; although I've read somewhere that some Angolan players (I think it was a guy who met some players at the 2006 World Championship) could not speak good English, I wonder if this is a factor.

mvblair
05-12-2011, 05:45 PM
Among the top 25 NTs (according to FIBA's ranking) the only country that never produced a single NBA player is Angola (ranked 13th). Even Iran with no diplomatic relationship with the US has an NBA player. When will we see an Angolan in the NBA? Is it because of lack of exposure? I doubt Angolan players don't want to play in the NBA; although I've read somewhere that some Angolan players (I think it was a guy who met some players at the 2006 World Championship) could not speak good English, I wonder if this is a factor. There have been a few really good Angolan players. Most recently, Olimpiano Cipriano was playing for the Detroit Pistons in the summer league, but he was cut at the last minute. I always thought Joaquim Gomes (from Valparaiso) would make it, even when he went undrafted a few years ago.

I think part of the problem is that NBA teams don't want to take a chance on smaller African players. The stereotype of an African player is somebody like Dikembe Mutombo or Desagana Diop. Angola has some wonderful guards and forwards, but they don't get any attention because they are not seven feet tall.

That's a problem everywhere, though. NBA scouts get excited when they hear about a seven footer overseas.

There also seems to be a reluctance by Angolans to play overseas. Sometimes some of them will take jobs in Portugal or Germany (I think Gomes played in Germany), but they just don't seem to go overseas very often.

Buzissa
05-12-2011, 07:24 PM
The only Angolan player who is skilled enough to play at a high level (not necessarily the NBA) is Cipriano, imo. He just lacks some workable, crucial mental attributes.
In the last couple of years, we have witnessed the arrival of some Africans in Europe at young age and that's good for their development. Unfortunately, European teams seem to be only attracted for big men. That's why I find hard to see any Angolan in the NBA or high-level European competition. There's no specially tall player in the making and the scouts tend to ignore swingmen, which is understandable since it is a more risky bet.

JGX
05-12-2011, 11:43 PM
I think one would have to prove himself a higher level in Europe first, or star at the NCAA level.