Denver Nuggets Release:
DENVER, December 1, 2020 – The Denver Nuggets have signed both Zeke Nnaji (22nd overall pick) and R.J. Hampton (24th overall pick) to their rookie contracts, President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today.
Nnaji (NAH-zjee), 6-11, 240, appeared in 32 games (all starts) for the University of Arizona, averaging 16.1 points, 8.6 rebounds and 0.9 blocks while shooting 57.0% from the field in his freshman campaign. He was named the 2019-20 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year while ranking ninth in the conference in scoring, fifth in rebounding and fourth in field goal percentage. He also recorded 14 double-doubles, marking the second most by a freshman in Arizona history.
Hampton, 6-6, 176, spent the 2019-20 season in Australia’s NBL with the New Zealand Breakers, after deciding to forego his freshman year of college. In 15 games, Hampton averaged 8.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists while shooting 40.0% from the field in 20.6 minutes per game. The 19-year-old native of Dallas won gold medals with USA Basketball at the 2017 FIBA Under-16 Americas Championship and the 2018 FIBA U-17 Basketball World Cup. Hampton averaged 32.0 points, 9.7 rebounds, 6.4 assists and 3.9 steals at Little Elm (Texas) High School in 2018-19. Denver acquired the rights to Hampton as a part of a four-team draft-night trade with New Orleans, Milwaukee and Oklahoma City.