Neemias Queta makes history: First Portuguese player selected in the NBA Draft

2021-07-30T12:51:45+00:00 2021-07-30T12:54:34+00:00.

Antonis Stroggylakis

30/Jul/21 12:51

And now he might become the first-ever Portuguese NBA player.

By Eurohoops team/

Center Neemias Queta made history Friday (29/7) by becoming the first-ever Portuguese player to be picked in the NBA Draft. Queta was selected by the Sacramento Kings with the 39th overall pick.

In 2019, Queta, now 22, helped the Portuguese U20 national team win the gold medal in the FIBA U20 European Championship B. He was named to the All-Tournament team despite missing the Final due to injury.

He played college basketball with the Utah State.

If the Kings sign him to a deal, then Queta will also become the first-ever NBA player from Portugal.

Per Kings:

The Sacramento Kings tonight selected Neemias Queta (Nuh-mee-us Kay-tuh) from Utah State with the 39th overall draft selection in NBA Draft 2021, according to General Manager Monte McNair.

Queta, the Mountain West Conference (MWC) Defensive Player of the Year for both 2019 and 2021, brings a defensive prowess to the Kings after holding records of most career blocks (219) and blocks per game (2.5) during his three-year stint at Utah State. He was also selected to the MWC All-Defensive First Team in each of the three seasons, and holds single-season records of 97 blocks and blocks per game (3.3) during the 2020-21 season.

As a junior for the Aggies, Queta averaged 14.9 points (.559 FG%, .707 FT%), 10.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 3.3 blocks, 1.1 steals and 30.0 minutes per game in 29 games (all starts) during the 2020-21 season. At Utah State, Queta accrued career averages of 13.2 points (.594 FG%, .646 FT%), 9.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 2.5 blocks and 28.0 minutes per game in 86 games (84 starts). A 7-0, 245-pound native of Barreiro, Portugal, Queta becomes the first-ever native of Portugal to be drafted into the NBA.

Photo: FIBA