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Is Hustle’s Bo Cruz A Real NBA Player? NBA Player’s Truth Explained

Is Hustle's Bo Cruz A Real NBA Player? NBA Player’s Truth Explained

Although several professional basketball players have cameos in Adam Sandler’s new Netflix film Hustle, is the main character, Bo Cruz, an actual NBA player?

The cast of Hustle does an amazing job of blurring the lines between fiction and reality. True NBA fans from different generations will get to see appearances from current and past real NBA stars throughout the movie. With almost every single one of them playing themselves in Hustle, including Shaquille O’Neal, Dirk Nowitzki, Trae Young, Luka Dončić, and Charles Barkley, viewers will become fully immersed in Bo Cruz’s story.

Although Hustle has created a few characters that are not based on real people, such as Bo Cruz, there are more appearances by NBA players than fictitious ones. The talented international prospect is actually played by Juancho Hernangómez, who is in reality a professional basketball player. This role is his acting debut, and it has gained him much more recognition in the NBA community.

Is Hustle's Bo Cruz A Real NBA Player? NBA Player’s Truth Explained

The Story of Bo Cruz

Hernangómez plays Bo Cruz, a talented Spanish basketball player whom Sandler’s character recruits to the NBA in America. The film was popular with critics, and after news of the signing broke, Sandler and Bo Cruz quickly became trending topics on Twitter.

Netflix’s 2022 movie Hustle features Adam Sandler as the lead, Stanley Sugerman. However, while audiences will be drawn to see Adam Sandler on the big screen again, Hustle tells Bo Cruz’s story—a tale of immense talent and dedication despite overwhelming odds. As a scout for the Philadelphia 76ers, Stanley takes it upon himself to get Bo drafted by an NBA team but faces many challenges along the way.

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Who is Juancho Hernangomez?

Juan Alberto “Juancho” Hernangómez Geuer is a professional basketball player who originally hails from Spain. Juancho is signed with the Toronto Raptors of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Before playing in the NBA, he used to play for Estudiantes of Liga ACB and also represented Spain’s senior men’s national team. The Denver Nuggets drafted him in 2016 but later traded him to the Minnesota Timberwolves after three seasons and a half.

After playing for the team over the course of seven seasons, he had short stays with the Spurs, Celtics, and Utah Jazz. In 2022, he was in a Netflix basketball film called Hustle alongside Adam Sandler. He signed with the Toronto Raptors in the offseason of that year and also won the Eurobasket trophy with his home country’s Spain national team.

Explaining Juancho Hernangómez’s Pro & NBA Career

Born in 1995, Juancho Hernangómez began his professional basketball journey early when he signed with CB Estudiantes at only 17. By the time he was 20, he had already earned an ACB Best Young Player Award and played on Spain’s bronze medal-winning team in the 2013 FIBA Europe Under-18 Championship, as well as silver medal-winning teams that competed at the European Under-20 Championship in 2014 and 2015. It came as no surprise to anyone when he declared himself available for selection in that year’s NBA Draft.

Juancho Hernangómez was drafted into the NBA by Hustle in 2016, where he became a first-round pick overall and the 15th selection. He demonstrated himself to be a valuable team player throughout his three seasons with us, playing in 191 games and starting 37 of them. However, during the 2019–2020 season, we traded him to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Although he only played for them for one and a half seasons, totaling 66 games started—20 of which were some of his best basketball yet—we’re glad to have had him on our original team.

Juancho Hernangómez, who has played in the NBA and acted in Hustle as Bo Cruz, signed with the Boston Celtics for the 2021–2022 season. In January, he was traded to the San Antonio Spurs but then moved again to the Utah Jazz later that month.

Is Hustle's Bo Cruz A Real NBA Player? NBA Player’s Truth Explained

Adam Sandler’s Hustle is Full of NBA Cameos

Juancho Hernangómez isn’t the only NBA player with a cameo in Adam Sandler’s show Hustle; several other players make appearances as well. Some play themselves, while others have roles that are central to the plot. For example, Kermit Wills, who is played by Minnesota Timberwolves’ star Anthony Edwards, is one of the film’s antagonists. Orlando Magic player German-born Moritz Wagner also stars in Hustle as Haas, a prodigal import player.

One of the all-time greats, Julius “Dr. J” Irving, makes a cameo in Hustle, and he’s considered one of the greatest Sixers players ever. In 1987, the 63-year-old retired from his work but still made appearances in “Boa Challenge.” The challenge is based on a video of Dr. J slam-dunking at an old age. Dirk Nowitzki, a two-time MVP, makes a cameo in this European movie, helping Stanley become an NBA player. From easy dopamine hits to Boa’s required verisimilitude feature film presence throughout the NBA, McClendon is able to prove himself and gain credibility.

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Is Bo Cruz a real NBA player?

Bo Cruz is a fictional character played by the real-life basketball player Juancho Hernangómez.

Was Hustle Based on a true story?

It may seem like a story based on real life, but it is not. 

Where is the hustle located?

Philadelphia, USA.

How tall is Bo Cruz?

Bo Cruz is 6’9” tall.

About the author

Steven Ly

Steven Ly is the Startup Program and Events Manager at TheNextHint Inc. She recruits rockstar startups for all TC events including Disrupt, meetups, Sessions, and more both domestically and internationally. Previously, she helped produce Dreamforce with Salesforce and Next '17 with Google. Prior to that, she was on the advertising teams at both Facebook and AdRoll, helping support advertisers in North America and helped grow those brands globally. Outside of work, Steven enjoys Flywheel, tacos, the 49ers, and adventuring around the globe.

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