Haiti's Fast-Rising Basketball Star Nerlens Noel

Haitian-American basketball player, Nerlens Noel, is a rising star in the National Basketball Association. Born in 1994 of expatriate parents in New Hampshire, he attended Tilton High School, where he first attracted attention as a talented player.


Realizing he had better odds of being drafted by college-recruiting scouts in the class of 2012, instead of 2013, he persuaded Tilton High sports director to let him jump a grade, promising he would study hard to catch up. For his efforts, he became the top-rated player of 2012 class. This achievement made him eligible to perform at two high-profile exposition games, the Nike Hoop Summit and Jordan Brand Classic.

In the fall of 2012, Nerlens began his freshman year at University of Kentucky (UK) and played NCAA basketball, Division I. He broke the nine-blocks-in-a-single-game record held by Sam Bowie for 32 years. Nerlens scored 12 blocks against Ole Miss, to win 87-74.

In February 2013 he sustained a anterior cruciate ligament knee injury, sidelined the rest of the season. But he still came out for the 2013 NBA Draft. He was predicted to be the number one pick. Instead he landed as 6th draft pick for the Philadelphia 76ers. He will play center and power forward positions for them. Currently Nerlens is paying visits to sports-medicine doctors to heal in time for the 2014 season, beginning in December.

Awards Nerlens has collected so far include SEC Freshman and Defensive Player of the Year and Freshman All American.

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