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Nigeria Pulled Off One of the Greatest Upsets in International Basketball History

On Saturday evening, Nigeria, with six NBA players and former NBA head coach Mike Brown at the helm, became the first African nation to beat the US, who were playing the first of the five tune-up games before the Tokyo Olympics. “At the end of the day, it doesn’t mean much in the standings as far as where we’re trying to get to,” Brown said. “But it’s a good win for us. I don’t think any African team has been able to beat USA Basketball in an exhibition game or a real game … We’re trying to get a little bit of momentum for Nigeria and for the continent of Africa,” Brown added. Nigeria, which had 12 NBA players in their 49-man training camp in California and seven in uniform on Saturday, were led by Gabriel Nnamdi Vincent with 21 points. The US, who have won three Olympic men’s basketball titles since settling for bronze in 2004, are looking to regain global dominance after finishing in seventh at the 2019 FIBA World Cup.