Three American basketball youngsters of Nigerian descent Chuma Okeke, KZ Okpala and Miyi Oni have been drafted into the NBA and picked up by Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns and Golden State Warriors respectively.
Okeke, Okpala and Oni were part of the 60 college stars that got drafted into the NBA on Thursday, June 20 in Brooklyn, New York.
Okeke who was born in Atlanta to a Nigerian dad Chuka Okeke came first among the trio of Nigerian descent as the No. 16 draft, Okpala as No. 32 and Oni in 58.
He was among the first round pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft after a strong sophomore season with Auburn Tigers. He is the first Auburn player to be drafted since 2001 to end an 18-year gap between NBA Draft picks for his college and the college's first-rounder since 2000. He is also the highest-drafted player from Auburn since 1988.
He averaged 12 points and a team-best 6.8 rebounds per game and also led the Tigers in steals before his season ended with a torn ACL.
Okeke will miss a large chunk of his first NBA season but Orlando Magic have promised to be patient with him. The NBA franchise believe in his talent and had been speaking to him before his injury.
Born to Nigerian parents, Martin and Mary, Okpala grew up in Orange County, California where he started playing basketball at the age of four.
He played his high school basketball for Esperanza High School in Anaheim, California and joined Stanford in 2016 where he had his college career.
Okpala this past season had 15 games with at least 20 points, second most in the Pac-12 behind the 16 of Washington State's Robert Franks.
This past season, the forward averaged a team-high 16.8 points and 5.7 rebounds, finished fifth in the Pac-12 in free throws made per game and fourth in attempts.
He was the No. 32 draft to the Suns who have decided to trade him to the Indiana Pacers who will then trade him to the Miami Heat.
No. 58 draft Oni was picked up by the Golden State Warriors who have officially traded him to the Utah Jazz.
Born to Nigerian parents, his dad Opeyemi who is a professor at the University of Phoenix and an engineer and mum Oludotun, Oni is the first Ivy League player that has been taken in the NBA Draft since 1995.
He grew up in Northridge, Los Angeles and began playing high school basketball at Viewpoint School, where he was named the divisional player of the year.
He played college basketball for the Yale Bulldogs.