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UCAM CIARD tested James Nnaji for the NBA Draft

The best basketball league in the world requires official anthropometric and performance measurements from candidates. The Barcelona player has been selected 31st overall by the Charlotte Hornets

UCAM CIARD tested James Nnaji for the NBA Draft
Tomás T. Freitas and Antonio Martínez with James Nnaji after the tests in Barcelona

The UCAM Research Centre for High Performance Sport (CIARD-UCAM), directed by Pedro Emilio Alcaraz, was chosen to perform the official measurements of James Nnaji, FC Barcelona player, in view of his presentation as a candidate for the NBA Draft, the best basketball league in the world. Every player applying for this process must submit anthropometric and performance data certified by an NBA-approved facility. CIARD-UCAM was therefore selected to perform this task as it has all the elements, experience and certifications needed to complete these demanding tests rigorously, objectively and independently.

Tomás T. Freitas, UCAM researcher and lecturer, and Antonio Martínez, pre-doctoral researcher, were the members of CIARD-UCAM appointed to travel to Barcelona to measure Nnaji. The NBA requires official and accurate measurements of the player entering the Draft; hence the importance of these tests being conducted by qualified professionals with certified devices and proven experience in measuring at the highest international level.

Anthropometric measurements were taken first, followed by the performance tests: vertical jump, circuit with changes of direction or linear sprint measured with photocell systems for automatic time determination.

Specifically, the measurement of the vertical jump was carried out on a force platform and with Vertec equipment (exactly the same used in the NBA combine). In addition, the CIARD team held several meetings with NBA draft combine officials in order for the tests to meet NBA standards and leave nothing to chance.

The data obtained was sent to the NBA, which made this information available to all franchises who, in turn, have the same official data on all players who apply. In the early hours of last night, 18-year-old James Nnaji was selected 31st overall by the Charlotte Hornets.


UCAM CIARD: experience at the highest level

CIARD professionals at the Universidad Católica de Murcia have proven experience working at the highest level with elite athletes and clubs. They regularly monitor the performance and nutritional plan of outstanding athletes such as Mo Katir, Mariano García and Miguel Ángel López. CIARD leads a Research Network on the prevention of hamstring injuries, funded by the Consejo Superior de Deportes, made up of clubs such as Manchester City, FC Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Sevilla FC, among other major European clubs. It works closely with the Gasol Foundation on various projects. And this is also the reference centre for UCAM's professional clubs: the basketball club, which competes in the Liga Endesa and Basketball Champions League, and the football club, which is in the 2nd RFEF. CIARD-UCAM recently conducted a series of very specific tests on UFC fighter Ilia Topuria in preparation for his fight scheduled for this weekend to become 5th in the World.