popular
Photos of Mfiondu Kabengele and Bruno Fernando by Sarah Stier/Getty Images. Photos of Bol Bol and Sekou Doumbouya by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images.

Meet the 8 African Players Who've Been Newly Drafted Into the NBA

These players hailing from across the continent are set to have promising careers as new NBA athletes.

The 2019 NBA Draft went down Thursday night at Brooklyn's Barclays Center, where 60 talented hopefuls from college basketball and international leagues were drafted into the NBA.

As our recent preview mentioned, eight players with roots stemming from the continent were in the running for this next step in their professional careers. Out of the prospects, two new and unexpected faces were selected.

Get to know them below.


Chuma Okeke | Nigeria

Okeke was drafted by the Orlando Magic in the first round as the 16th pick. The 20-year-old forward was born in Georgia to a Nigerian father and played for Auburn University.

Read his draft board here.

Chikezie 'KZ' Okpala | Nigeria

Okpala, 20, was drafted by the Phoenix Suns in the second round as the 32nd pick. The rookie small forward, who played for Stanford University, was born in California to his Nigerian-born parents—Martin and Mary Okpala.

Read his draft board here.

Rui Hachimura | Benin + Japan

Hachimura indeed made history becoming the first Japanese-born player to be drafted into the NBA. The rookie power forward from Gonzaga University was drafted by the Washington Wizards in the first round as the ninth pick.

Read his draft board here.

Sekou Doumbouya | Guinea

Doumbouya is the French professional basketball player coming from team Limoges CSP of the LNB Pro A league. The small forward was also drafted in the first round by the Detroit Pistons as the 15th pick.

Read his draft board here.

Mfiondu Kabengele | Democratic Republic of Congo

Kabengele, the nephew of NBA vet and Hall of Fame inductee Dikembe Mutumbo, was drafted by the Brooklyn Nets in the first round as the 27th pick. The rookie center grew up in Canada and attended Florida State University.

Read his draft board here.

Bruno Fernando | Angola

Fernando was drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers in the second round at the 34th pick. The rookie center attended the University of Maryland, College Park, where he averaged 13.6 points and 10.6 rebounds per game by his sophomore year.

Read his draft board here.

Bol Bol | Sudan

Although it was anticipated for Bol Bol to be selected in the first round, the center and son of the late Manute Bol was drafted by the Miami Heat head in the second round as the 44th pick. Bol was then traded to the Denver Nuggets.

Read his draft board here.

Olumiye Oni | Nigeria

Oni was drafted by the Golden State Warriors in the second round as the 58th pick, but was then traded to the Utah Jazz. The shooting guard who played for Yale University has made history becoming the first player from the Ivy League to be drafted since Jerome Allen was selected in the second round from University of Pennsylvania in 1995.

Read his draft board here.

popular
Still from YouTube

Michael Kiwanuka Pays Homage to the Black Liberation Movements of the '60s In New Video 'Hero'

The artist's latest single references some of his personal heroes including Malcolm X, Fred Hampton, Tupac Shakur and more.

British-Ugandan soul singer Michael Kiwanuka drops another single ahead of the release of his forthcoming album, KIWANUKA.

In "Hero" the singer pays homage to the Black Power and Civil Rights movements of the 1960s and 70s. The music video, directed by CC Wade references several Black leaders and some of the artist's personal heroes including Malcolm X, Fred Hampton, Martin Luther King Jr., Sam Cooke, Tupac Shakur, Marvin Gaye and more. It also depicts the FBI's often illegal efforts to stop Black movements and other anti-establishment groups through its Counterintelligence Program, as noted in Rolling Stone.

Keep reading... Show less
popular
Photo courtesy of Cimarrón Productions.

Cimarrón Is the Women-Led Film Production Company Empowering Afro-Colombians to Tell Their Own Stories

The "first Afro-Colombian film production company," is teaching filmmaking in Colombia's black communities in order to combat the lack of representation.

When filmmaker, activist, and cultural agent Heny Cuesta first started her career in Colombia, she noticed a severe lack of black creators in the industry. Cuesta, an Afro-Colombian originally from Cali, was the only Black woman in a room full of mestizo directors at a panel discussion at the International Film Festival in Cartagena de Indias (FICCI) in 2013.

"None of the filmmakers were black, but they were talking about ethnic content despite the fact that they didn't know the territory," says Cuesta. That scene shocked her, but it reflected the low number of movies directed by black directors in Colombia. In 2018, Colombia's film industry premiered 37 feature films and only one of them –Candelaria– was directed by a black director. It received many international awards.

The lack of blackness in Colombia's film industry goes far beyond studios, film festivals and production companies. Afro-Colombians make up almost 20 percent of the population but historically have had few opportunities to access education. Most black Colombians, who come from cities and towns along the Pacific and the Caribbean coasts, have been neglected and isolated due to a lack of infrastructure, as well as a lack of education and job opportunities.

Keep reading... Show less
News Brief
Shatta Wale in "Borjor"

Start Your Weekend Early With Shatta Wale's 'Borjor'

The Ghanaian star shares the new track and music video for "Borjor" on his birthday.

Shatta Wale is celebrating his birthday by dropping a new track that's sure to get you in party mode.

"Borjor" is an addictive new song built on a mid-tempo afro-fusion beat work and led by the Ghanaian dancehall heavyweight's vocals about the object of his desire.

The accompanying music video, directed by PKMI, follows Shatta Wale and his friends to a day of swimming and messing around in a pool and mansion.

Shatta Wale recently dropped the level-up anthem "Swizz Bank," he also hopped on the same riddim as Vybz Kartel's hit "Any Weather," produced by Shabdon Records.

Watch the new music video for Shatta Wale's "Borjor" below.

For all the best & latest Ghanaian music, follow our new GHANA WAVE playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

Keep reading... Show less
popular

Listen to Bongeziwe Mabandla’s New Single ‘Jikeleza’

Bongeziwe Mabandla shares new optimistic single.

"Jikeleza" is South African folk musician Bongeziwe Mabandla's latest single. The song, which is sung in IsiXhosa like most of the man's work, speaks on love giving us life.

"It is about our universal need to connect," says Bongeziwe in a press release. "It is about the togetherness in people and about the things that bind us and make us the same."

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.