Nigerian-born American basketball star Nneka Ogwumike had no problem stripping for ESPN The Magazine annual body issue.
Ogwumike is an American basketball player of Nigerian descent that plays for the Los Angeles Sparks of theWomen’s NBA.
The 27-year-old will be one of 23 athletes to grace ESPN The Magazine’s annual body and one of its nine cover stars.
Posing nude for the cover of the prestigious magazine has been a goal for 2012 No. 1 WNBA Draft. She was asked to be on the cover in 2013 with her younger sister and fellow WNBA star Chiney but they declined because it wasn’t the right time for them.
“It’s always been something that I wanted to do,” Ogwumike said about the cover.
“I think it’s mostly because of the elite collection of athletes that they pick. It attributes to your success individually because they don’t just pick anybody.”
“I thought it shows a different side of me. A little bit more of the authentic side,” Ogwumike added,
“It also shows the confident part of me that a lot of people would not expect. I always thought the Body Issue did a great job of exemplifying a bit of a more artistic and graceful side of what athletes do.”
Nneka and NBA star Isaiah Thomas are only the basketballers on the cover with the likes of Ezekiel Elliott, Caroline Wozniacki, Javier Baez, and Julian Edelman also on them.
Not many parents will want to see their children nude on the cover of a magazine, nonetheless Nigerian parents.
But although they had their doubts about the cover, they respected her decision to be on it.
“It allowed me to show my true essence, it allowed me to show that I was confident in my own skin,” she said.
This issue of ESPN The Magazine debuted online on Wednesday, July 5 while the full magazine will be available from Monday, July 17.