By Gabriel Kekong
The head coach of D’Tigers, Mike Brown has said that if the right things are put in place by African basketball federations, many African teams can compete favourably with the best in the world.
Brown who is embarking on his first ever assignment in Africa after being contracted by the Nigeria Basketball Federation to handle the D’Tigers said there are great African players in the NBA with what he experienced at the just concluded 2021 FIBA Afrobasket qualifiers.
Speaking with NBBF Media, Coach Brown said, “The game of basketball in Africa is unique from the standpoint that every team you look at possesses the athleticism necessary for the game. Physically, they are there and we have a lot of physically gifted players. When you put all together and try to bring out maximum potential from each of these African teams, it is something that everybody is striving for.”
With many teams struggling to break into the top 30 in the global ranking except for Nigeria currently ranked 23rd and first in Africa, Brown said once many national federations invest in quality coaches and put the right structure in place, they will definitely improve drastically to become a global force.
“Now, we just have to get a little bit organized, get more coaching, a little more structure and we can compete with the best around the world. Once that is done, I think basketball in Africa is going to improve tremendously,” he said.
Despite D’Tigers’ perfect result with wins against South Sudan, Rwanda and Mali, topping group B after three games, Brown who also doubles as Golden State Warriors assistant coach said that the results did not reflect the opposition his team faced.
The team will hope to maintain its unbeaten run on the continent when the qualifiers resume.
Corereporters report that Teams have already commenced preparations for the third window of the qualifiers between February 19 – 21, 2021 which was announced by FIBA on Monday.