Nigerian Basketball Federation (NBBF) President Musa Kida has praised Miami Heat and Nigerian National team player, Gabriel Nnamdi Vincent, who has become the first Nigerian national team player to qualify for the National Basketball Association (NBA) Finals.
President Kida praised Vincent’s commitment and work ethic during the season. “Just early this year, Gabe was playing in the G-League with Stockton Kings before his hard work and consistency was recognised which earned him a two-way deal with Miami Heat and Sioux Falls Skyforce.”
Vincent earned a national team callup after a stellar year in the NBA G-League which saw him named Most Improved Player of the Year. He debuted at the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China where he averaged 11.4 points (49th best shooter at the world cup) and 1.2 rebounds.
While congratulating the Miami Heat Guard, Kida voiced words of inspiration for many who are finding it difficult to stay focused as the effects of COVID-19 have impacted Nigeria’s organised sport system.
“With consistency, hardwork and dedication, success is guaranteed. What the federation has achieved so far or what you see Gabe achieving now is not accidental. It took years of preparation”.
“We are excited that he made up his mind to play for his fatherland which helped our world cup campaign as D’Tigers became the first and till now the only African country to qualify for the 2020 Olympics”
According to Kida, the relationship has been extremely beneficial for all parties involved.
“Playing for DTigers has helped in improving the team while the national team has also provided him a platform to show his talents at the biggest global basketball event”.
For many Nigerian players at home and abroad who are finding it difficult to motivate themselves to strive for greatness, Kida said the latest achievement of the 2020 NBA G-League’s most improved player should serve as an inspiration to them. He is now playing on the biggest basketball stage in the world.