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Never a superstar, but always a hard-working, team-first player, shooting guard Jumpei Nakama has enjoyed popularity and the respect of his peers since the bj-league’s inception in 2005. He’s been a fan favorite throughout the country as the league has grown nonstop for nearly a decade.

As the league closes in on its 10th season in 2014-15, the number of players who’ve been in the league since day one is dwindling. With Nakama’s planned retirement at the conclusion of the Shiga Lakestars season, that fraternity will be even smaller.

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