James Nnaji is a doubt for the Charlotte Hornets summer league team and could stay back at Barcelona.
Nigerian professional basketball player James Nnaji may have his NBA dream delayed for another season.
The Charlotte Hornets made a draft-day trade on June 23 to obtain James Nnaji by swapping their 34th and 39th picks.
Nnaji, who is only 18 years old and first became well-known thanks to his efforts for Barcelona last season, possesses NBA-caliber athleticism but is still an exceptionally undeveloped big-man prospect.
Fans of the Hornets, though, might not have the chance to watch their young potential play this summer.
James Nnaji and Charlotte Hornets could agree return to Barcelona
Solé said, “What I was told is that he’s not thinking right now 100% to leave Barcelona. He’s evaluating his situation with his agent.
“It’s not guaranteed that he’ll play in the Summer League, but he wants to play, and Barcelona will probably allow him to play.”
After making moves to acquire Nnaji in the NBA Draft, the Hornets will likely want to get a closer look at their new big man prospect, which would entail him making the trip to Las Vegas this summer.
There’s no guarantee that Nnaji will join the Hornets roster this year, as he could stay in Spain to continue developing in one of the best leagues in Europe.
The Hornets coaching staff will begin an assessment of his current talent level and what he needs to improve on before moving across the Atlantic.
Nnaji played for Barcelona in the Liga ACB in 27 regular-season games last year, averaging 4.9 points and 3 rebounds.
During EuroLeague play, the dynamic big man appeared on the court 15 times and registered an average of 1.2 rebounds and 2 points.
The Hornets will have team control over one of Europe's top big man prospects by allowing Nnaji to grow in Europe.
It's just a matter of honing Nnaji's game and expanding his skill set because he already possesses the physical tools required to succeed at the NBA level.
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