John Amaechi

John Amaechi

NBA Biography
NBA Biography Less

John Amaechi

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John Uzoma Ekwugha Amaechi () OBE (born November 26, 1970) is a retired American-born British basketball player who currently works as a psychologist, educator and political activist in Europe and the United States.

In February 2007, after his retirement from the NBA, Amaechi became the first openly gay NBA player after coming out in his memoir Man in the Middle.

Early life

The son of a Nigerian, Igbo father, Amaechi was born in Boston in the USA. He was raised in Heaton Moor, Stockport, England, with his two younger sisters by his English mother, attending Stockport Grammar School. Amaechi moved to the United States to play high school basketball at St. John's Jesuit High School in Toledo, Ohio.

He began playing college basketball at Vanderbilt but transferred to Penn State, where he was a two-time First Team Academic All-American selection. While at Penn State, Amaechi became a motivational public speaker and a mentor for area youth.

Playing career

The 6 ft 10 in, 270 lb (208 cm, 122 kg) center was signed undrafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1995. He played 28 games for the Cleveland Cavaliers during the 1995–1996 season, then played for two years in Europe (France: Cholet, Limoges; Italy: Kinder Bologna; Greece: Panathinaikos; UK: Sheffield Sharks). In the season 1996–1997 he played for Panathinaikos BC. In September 1996 he won the Intercontinental Cup, being the first scorer...
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