The Miami Heat have decided to set their sights overseas to see who else they could give a shot to potentially make the final 15-man roster.
A few days after signing 6’6″ swingman Garrett Temple to a non-guaranteed deal, the Heat are now looking at another 6’6″ swingman in the form of Chamberlain Oguchi, who arose out of the Olympic fame during his time with Nigeria this past summer.
Playing alongside former NBA player Ike Diogu and current New Orleans Hornets forward Al-Farouq Aminu, Oguchi drew the interest of NBA teams with solid play the guard and small forward position. He would help lead the team to a 1-4 record in their first ever Olympic games, recording a win over Tunisia. However, they also set history in one of the worst losses in Olympic history, falling 156-73 to a United States team that converted 29 three-pointers.
Oguchi came off the bench to record 11 points on 4-of-11 shooting, 2-of-7 from deep, three rebounds, two assists and a steal in 20 minutes worth of action. He was the one of only two players on the team to score in double figures that day.
He announced via his Twitter account that he has been invited back to workout with the Heat. He had also worked out with the San Antonio Spurs. He also visited the Heat on September 6th and had this to say about his experience:
“Took my talents to South Beach & had a great showing. Coach Spo & staff are amazing. Now time to take my talents to San Antonio
Prior to playing with the Nigerian international team, Oguchi played college ball with Oregon and Illinois State, receiving significantly more playing time in his senior season at Illinois State, where he averaged 15.2 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.3 assists per. He also shot 41 percent from the field and and an impressive 39 percent from beyond the arc. He would go undrafted a few months later.
Chamberlain has played in a variety of places, including the D-League’s Maine Red Claws, France’s STB Le Havre, the Philippines’ Meraico Bolts, Lebanon’s Hoops Club, Iraq’s Duhok, Venezuela’s Panteras de Miranda and a final stop in the Philippines where he played with the Bolts for a second year.
By joining the Olympic team, Oguchi put it all out on the floor basically as an audition for any NBA teams that were watching.
Oguchi would likely be in a battle with Temple and Terrel Harris for a roster spot that would have him in the rotation at the guard and small forward positions, if he does impress enough to earn the non-guaranteed deal first.
However, if Temple, a castoff from the Cleveland Cavaliers summer league team, could make it, then it’s likely that Oguchi should find himself practicing with a team similar to the United States basketball team he faced a few months back.