Yakuba “Billy” Ouattara, signed to a two-way G-League contract by the Nets, was cut Sunday night by the French national team, permitting him to join the NBA team sooner than if he had played for France in Eurobasket.
French national team Vincent Collet announced his decision on BFM Sport following France’s victory over Italy in a "friendly" game. Ouattara, a 6’4” shooting guard, wouldn’t have been able to join teammates in Brooklyn until late September if he hadn’t been cut. Eurobasket runs from August 31 through September 17. France is expected to be one of the main contenders in the continental championships.
Ouattara, who holds both French and Ghanian citizenship, is 25 years old. He played for Monaco in the French league last season. In 32 total games, he averaged 11.8 points on 51.4 percent (147-of-286) shooting from the floor, including a 40.0 percent (40-of-100) clip from beyond the arc, while pulling down 3.3 rebounds in 23.9 minutes per contest.
The Nets had him join their veteran players in early July when they flew to Las Vegas to cheer on the summer league team and work out on their own.
In other FIBA "friendly" news, Russia lost to both Germany (coached by Nets Assistant Chris Fleming) and Poland. In the two games, Timofey Mozgov averaged 12 points and six rebounds. No three point attempts yet.