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Steven Adams coming home with star friend

Last updated 16:11 13/08/2013

SAM WORTHINGTON

REUTERS

COMING HOME: Steven Adams in a game for the Pittsburgh Panthers.

REUTERS

New Zealand's NBA rookie Steven Adams is coming home for a working holiday - and he's bringing a rather famous friend.

The 20-year-old Oklahoma City Thunder centre has signed with global sporting giants adidas, who have helped rope in current NBA All-Star Brook Lopez to accompany him to Wellington.

In a coup for New Zealand basketball, the seven-foot duo will run a training camp and autograph session at the ASB Sports Centre in Kilbirnie.

Adams will also make an announcement on his international availability for the Tall Blacks.

In June Adams became the first New Zealander to be picked in the first round of the NBA draft when the Thunder selected him at No 12.

He is unavailable for the Tall Blacks' series against Australia but is taking a short break from training in Oklahoma to make a string of appearances in New Zealand.

Adams will visit his old school Scots College and sign autographs with the All Blacks in Wellington on Friday-week ahead of the Bledisloe Cup test on August 24.

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As adidas stable-mates Adams and Lopez have been working out together and have formed a friendship.

The 25-year-old Lopez was selected in the Eastern Conference All-Star team for the first time this year after a stellar season with the Brooklyn Nets.

Lopez, regarded as possibly the most offensively skilled centre in the league, averaged 19.4 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.1 blocks.

He will be eyeing a potential NBA championship with the Nets, who recruited Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Andrei Kirilenko, Jason Terry and rookie coach Jason Kidd in a blockbuster off-season.

Lopez will be one of the bigger sporting names to set foot in New Zealand in recent times.

Those interested in participating in Sunday's training camp can register by emailing craig.freear@nzbasketballacademy.com.

The clinic runs from midday-3pm and is open to boys and girls aged 10-17. The cost is $30.

- © Fairfax NZ News

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