Kelenna David Azubuike (born December 16, 1983) is an American
former professional basketball player. Born in London,
raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Azubuike became a standout player during
his play at Victory
Christian High School, and was eventually
recruited to play for the Wildcats of the University of Kentucky.
After finishing his junior season in college, Azubuike declared
himself eligible for the 2005 NBA Draft, eventually going undrafted
that year. Azubuike then played for the
Fort Worth Flyers
Fort Worth Flyers of the NBA
Development League, leading the league in scoring during the 2006–07
season and eventually being called up to play for the Golden State
1 Early years
2 NBA career
3 Broadcasting career
4 Personal life
5 NBA Career Statistics
5.1 Regular season
6 See also
8 External links
Azubuike was born in London,
England to Kenneth and Chy Azubuike.
Azubuike was raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Playing for Victory
Christian High School, Azubuike led his team to the state title as a
sophomore. He eventually became an All-State selection, averaging
39.1 points and 13.3 rebounds and leading his team to the Class 4A
State Championship Game as a senior. He was the top scorer in the
state of Oklahoma during his last three seasons of high school,
averaging 28.5 points as a sophomore and 38.7 points as a junior.
Azubuike finished his prep career with 3,530 points, 89 points short
of the all-time state scoring mark.
Considered a four-star recruit by Scout.com, Azubuike was listed as
the No. 8 small forward and the No. 34 player in the nation in
Playing under coach Tubby Smith, Azubuike said that the biggest
improvement to his game at Kentucky was the ability to create offense
through intense defense. As a junior, Azubuike was named to the
All-SEC Second Team by the
Associated Press and the league's coaches
after leading the team and ranking tenth in the SEC in points per
game, averaging 14.7 overall. Azubuike was named to the 2005 SEC
All-Tournament Team after averaging 18.0 points in three contests.
During his time with the organization, Azubuike helped the Wildcats to
Southeastern Conference titles, two SEC Tournament titles,
and two NCAA
Elite Eight appearances. Azubuike averaged 10.0 points
and 3.7 rebounds in 97 career games at the University of Kentucky,
shooting a 48.5% field goal average for his college career. While
attending the University of Kentucky, Azubuike majored in business
In April 2005, Azubuike announced his plans to enter the draft after
his junior year, signing with agent Joel Bell and ending his college
eligibility. In the 2005–06 season, Azubuike averaged 12.6
points, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.5 assists in forty-one games with the Fort
Worth Flyers of the NBA's Developmental League. Azubuike played
Denver Nuggets in the 2006 Toshiba Vegas Summer League, where
he averaged 16.4 points and finished tied at tenth in the league in
scoring. In August 2006, Azubuike was signed by the Houston Rockets
as a free agent, but eventually waived by October. Playing for Fort
Worth of the Development League again, Azubuike averaged 5.0 rebounds,
3.2 assists, 1.17 steals, and a league-best 26.0 points in 37.7
minutes per contest playing for the
Fort Worth Flyers
Fort Worth Flyers of the NBA
Development League, shooting 51.4% from the field and 48.5% from
three-point range over twelve games.
After going undrafted, the
Golden State Warriors
Golden State Warriors signed Azubuike on
January 2, 2007. Azubuike was the first
Gatorade Call-Up of the
NBA Development League
NBA Development League season, and the 49th player overall
to be called up to the NBA since the D-League began play in November
2001. During his second season with Golden State, Azubuike
expressed an interest in playing for the British team during the
build-up to the 2012
London Olympic Games, but was denied British
citizenship under the 1981 British Nationality Act. On July 17,
2008, Azubuike signed an offer sheet with the
Los Angeles Clippers
Los Angeles Clippers for
a three-year deal worth $9 million, with Golden State having seven
days to match the offer. In the final hour, Golden State matched
the offer made by the Clippers on July 24, 2008, allowing Azubuike to
remain a Warrior.
On November 17, 2009, it was announced that Azubuike would miss the
rest of the 2009–10 season because of a knee injury.
On July 9, 2010, Azubuike was traded to the
New York Knicks
New York Knicks along with
Ronny Turiaf and a future second-round pick in a
sign and trade deal for David Lee. Azubuike never played in a game
for the Knicks. He was waived by the Knicks on February 28, 2011.
On March 23, 2012, Azubuike was signed by the Dallas Mavericks. As
part of his comeback, he was assigned to the Mavericks' D-League
affiliate, the Texas Legends. On April 9, 2012, he was recalled by
the Mavericks. On April 20, 2012, Azubuike played in his first NBA
game since November 14, 2009, against the Golden State Warriors.
On June 28, 2012, during the 2012 NBA Draft, Azubuike was traded to
the Cleveland Cavaliers. He was waived by the Cavaliers on October
In the summer of 2015, Azubuike attended the
Sportscaster U. program
Syracuse University sponsored by the NBPA, training for a career in
broadcasting. Since then, he has been assigned to announce 11 of
the 19 NBA D-League games produced by NBA TV in 2016. Various of
these games have been broadcast by ESPNU.
NBC Sports Bay Area
NBC Sports Bay Area in 2016, covering Warriors games as a
Azubuike has three siblings: Nonzo, Nesochi and Adaeze. He is a
Christian music fan and enjoys creating his own music. During the
2006–07 season, Azubuike made an appearance on Bay Area hip hop
KMEL and conducted an interview while the station played music
which he personally produced. Azubuike is a Christian.
Azubuike has been involved with many humanitarian causes during his
time in the NBA. Azubuike accepted a personal invitation from Jakaya
Kikwete, the President of Tanzania, to take part in Leon H. Sullivan
Summit VIII, a five-day convention held from June 2 to June 6, 2008 in
Arusha, Tanzania. The convention brought together many of the world's
political and business leaders to focus attention and resources on
Africa's economic and social development.
NBA Career Statistics
Basketball Association portal
List of European basketball players in the United States
^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "NBA.com :
Kelenna Azubuike Bio
Page". NBA.com. Retrieved 2009-07-16.
Kelenna Azubuike Recruiting Profile
^ a b c Maloney, Mark. "Ex-Cat Azubuike earning respect of NBA
peers : KentuckySports.com". KentuckySports.com. Retrieved
^ "SI.com – NCAA
Basketball – UK's Morris remains in draft as
deadline passes – Tuesday June 21, 2005". Sports Illustrated.
2005-06-21. Retrieved 2009-07-16.
^ a b c "InsideHoops.com –
Kelenna Azubuike released by Houston
Rockets". Inside Hoops. Retrieved 2007-01-02.
^ a b "WARRIORS: Warriors Sign
Kelenna Azubuike to Contract". NBA.com.
^ Whittell, Ian (2007-12-31). "Blow for Britain as London-born Kelenna
Azubuike is denied passport – Times Online". The Times. Retrieved
^ Stein, Marc (2008-07-18). "Sources: Clips sign swingman Azubuike to
three-year offer sheet – NBA – ESPN". ESPN. Retrieved
^ "Warriors keep Azubuike, match Clippers' offer – NBA – ESPN".
ESPN. 2008-07-24. Retrieved 2008-07-24.
^ Marcus Thompson II. "Warriors'
Kelenna Azubuike out for the season,
C.J. Watson has swine flu". San Jose Mercury News. November 17, 2009.
Retrieved on November 17, 2009.
^ "Knicks Acquire Randolph, Azubuike & Turiaf". NBA.com. Turner
Sports Interactive, Inc. July 9, 2010. Retrieved July 9, 2010.
^ Knicks waive guard Kelenna Azubuike
Kelenna Azubuike to Mavericks
Kelenna Azubuike gets call to replace Lamar Odom". espn.go.com.
^ "Azubike plays in first NBA game in three seasons". allkyhoops.com.
^ Mavs add Kelenna Azuibuike to trade
^ Cavaliers Waive Keleena Azubuike
^ "UK basketball notebook: Ex-Cats Azubuike, Mohammed take crash
course in broadcasting". Kentucky Sports. July 15, 2015.
^ "NBA D-League Alum
Kelenna Azubuike Heading To Broadcast Booth For
D-League Showcase". DLeagueDigest.com. January 3, 2016.
^ "ESPNU to Televise 11 Regular-Season NBA D-League Games Starting in
January". dleague.nba.com. January 7, 2016.
^ Sarachik, Justin (June 13, 2014). "Former NBA Star Kelenna Azubuike
Shares Details on New Faith Based Film 'Midrange' and Being a
Christian Among Pro-Athletes (VIDEO INTERVIEW)". Breathecast.
Retrieved 6 February 2015.
^ "WARRIORS: Kelenna Azubuike: On A Mission To Tanzania". NBA.com.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kelenna Azubuike.
NBA.com Profile – Kelenna Azubuike
Career Statistics at Basketball-Reference.com