It’s not every year that the NBA Draft brings forth outstanding five-star talent, but rather a big man like Mohamed Bamba, who has a record 7-foot 10 inch (2.39 m) wingspan and is reportedly faster than most of the other players he would encounter in the NBA, including freaky athlete Russell Westbrook.
That should be able to describe the kind of pressure the sixth overall selection in the 2018 NBA Draft will face. However, many NBA enthusiasts, especially the Orlando Magic who selected him, are willing to bet millions of dollars on him to compete among the best players in the world.
Mo Bamba, as he is better known, was born in Harlem, New York, on May 12, 1998, the son of Mohamed Karlakwan Damala Bamba, the son of Ivorian immigrant parents, Lancine and Aminata Bamba. As he grew up, Bamba was inspired to play basketball due to the popularity in his neighborhood. This was also helped by the fact that he was blessed with the physical attributes necessary to play even better.
Mohamed Bamba first attended a public school in New York before moving on to an all-boys boarding school, Cardigan Mountain School in Canaan, New Hampshire, for his eighth and ninth grades. Bamba then attended high school at Westtown School in Westtown, Pennsylvania, where his achievements attracted the attention of many highly respected college programs, including Kentucky, Duke, Michigan, and Texas. Bamba also earned an invitation to play at the McDonald’s All American Game and the Nike Hoop Summit in 2017, before signing up to play for the Longhorns of Texas.
As part of the Longhorns team, Mohamed Bamba produced astonishing numbers from the start, which put the NBA teams on high alert. In his first college game, he scored 15 points and 8 rebounds in a blowout victory over Northwestern State. In his second game, he scored a double-double of 13 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 blocks against Lipscomb. In one game he scored a college career – 25 points in one game and 18 rebounds in another as his team fought off all the opponents they encountered.
Bamba’s efforts earned him a place on the All-Newcomer Team of the Big 12 as well as the All-Big 12 Second Team and the All-Defensive Team, whereupon he revealed that he was giving up his remaining college years to participate in the 2018 NBA Draft, where he was selected by Orlando Magic with the sixth overall selection.
Mohamed Bamba’s Salary
After Mohamed Bamba put a two-year contract for $10.56 million with the Orlando Magic on paper, he now earns an average annual salary of $5.2 million. This number will certainly increase in the coming years, as long as Bamba is able to make further progress in his game.
As mentioned above, Mohamed Bamba was born as the son of Lancine and Aminata Bamba, both of whom are Ivorian immigrants. But although they come from the same country, his parents met in the United States in 1997 before welcoming their son Mo the following year. Currently, Lancine and Aminata are reportedly no longer living together because his father decided to move back to the Ivory Coast while his mother still lives in Harlem. Regardless of their living situation, his parents are still married and have always shown themselves to be united when there is something that affects the welfare of their son.
To make ends meet, Bamba’s father worked as a car service driver. His son has described him as a very honest and hardworking person who strictly adheres to wearing a suit. Although they came from a low-income household, Bamba’s parents ensured that they worked very hard to send their son to private school when he had to escape the horror of the dreams of his older half-brothers Sidiki and Ibrahim Johnson playing basketball.
Sidiki and Ibrahim were born to Bamba’s mother and her first husband. Just like him, his two big brothers were very good basketball players when they grew up. Sidiki was recruited to Arizona but only lasted three games there before he was kicked off the team for breaking the rules. He then moved to Providence and later to Wabash Valley before his career fizzled out and led to a life of crime. In June 2015, Sidiki was sent to prison for robbery and attempted robbery.
Ibrahim, on the other hand, also played for a number of colleges, including Farmingdale State and Montevallo, before becoming involved in crime and going to jail for counterfeiting. Ibrahim and Mohamed have since become estranged after Ibrahim’s allegations that his brother received illegal financial benefits from a Michigan-based investor led to an NCAA investigation and almost compromised his college eligibility.
Height and Weight
Mohamed Bamba, who has a height of 2.13 m (7 feet 0 inches), definitely does not look out of place in the NBA. In the coming years, however, the former longhorn from Texas will have to put on a little more weight in order to show much more presence in the color. Currently, he weighs 225 pounds or 102 kg.