A week after the passing of Michael Ojo, many basketball players remain stunned by the sudden passing of well liked EuroLeague player.
The Nigerian center started playing soccer in his home country before switching to basketball when he was 16 years old. Michael participated at Giants of Africa’s camp in Lagos, led by Toronto Raptors President Masai Ujiri, and was subsequently offered a scholarship to play in the US.
He played 5 years with Florida State University where he was particularly appreciated and recognized as a committed student-athlete. With a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs, the Nigerian moved to Europe where he signed his first professional contract with FMP Belgrade.
For the last two seasons, Michael has been playing for Red Star in Belgrade, where he has quickly gained popularity among fans. This was also confirmed by Red Star legend Igor Rakocevic. He remembers Michael as a very polite and humble person. He continues :
“He was loved by all and was considered a dedicated professional. People that knew him called him the gentle giant. He had amazing physical potential and was constantly improving. We were excited about his future career. He will never be forgotten.”
ELPA Managing Director Bostjan Nachbar adds :
“Michael’s sudden passing was a big shock for the basketball community, especially for his teammates and those who knew him in person. He was a tough competitor with an extremely likeable personality and a very positive attitude. He will be deeply missed, both on and off the court.”
ELPA family sends its deepest condolences to Michael’s family, friends and teammates.