By Joe Apu
Head coach of Nigeria men’s basketball team, Mike Brown says he has his sights set on a podium finish at the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games due to commence in July not minding the opposition before the number 1 ranked African team in Africa.
Speaking on olympicchannel.com, Brown, who is also the assistant coach of the Golden State Warriors in the NBA said that he is not just going to the Olympics with Nigeria to participate but to have an impact.
“We’re not just going to Tokyo to represent Nigeria or African or the black people of the world; we’re going there to win. Trust me, I know I have been fortunate, blessed; however, you want to be in a situation I’ve been in. I’m doing things to put us in a position to try to have a podium finish come Olympics time which is very exciting for me and everybody else involved.
“But you also want to be able to try to impact the US and beyond and for me being African-American, there’s no better connection for me than a country in Africa and especially Nigeria given that the talent level is enormous coming from Nigeria.
He explained that the leadership of the Nigeria Basketball Federation in person of Musa Kida is a man he has a lot of respect for. “He reached ot to me and the vision he presented to me, in my opinion was second to none especially with where they are right now in the world rankings and where they plan/or want to be going forward.”
Nigeria is drawn in Group B for 202 Tokyo Olympic Games alongside Australia with the two remaining spots to be determined via the Olympic Qualifying Tournaments in Serbia and Croatia in late June.
The qualifiers in Croatia feature Germany, Russia, Mexico, Tunisia, Croatia and Brazil, while the tournament in Serbia will feature the Dominican Republic, New Zealand, Serbia, Puerto Rico, Italy, and Senegal.