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Zach Edey: “A team would be drafting me for who I am”

Photo: fiba.basketball

Zach Edey acknowledges the current trend in the NBA favoring centers who can shoot from outside. While he believes he can also develop that aspect of his game, he remains committed to staying true to his own playing style.

“I think it just comes with kind of realizing who I am,” Edey said. “I’m never going to be the wiry seven-foot guy who can – like Kevin Durant, that is never going to be me, guys like that. I’m a 7-foot-4, 300-pound guy. I’m built to be in the paint, to carve out space to protect my area.

“And that’s what I’m gonna keep doing. I think there’s a lot of people in the NBA that do stuff like that. (Jonas) Valanciunas, (Ivica) Zubac, Steven Adams; guys who had a lot of success in the NBA being those paint presences. I’m going to stick to who I am and I kind of know who I am.”

At the NBA Draft Combine, the Purdue product measured in at nearly 7-foot-4 without shoes and boasted a wingspan of almost 7-foot-11. Edey’s impressive size, coupled with his skill and timing, solidified his reputation as one of college basketball’s premier shot-blockers last season. He intends to leverage this shot-blocking ability and his prowess on the boards as his initial contributions to the NBA.

“A team would be drafting me for who I am,” Edey said. “I think I can get there but right now they’re not drafting me for, like, pick-and-pop shoot 3s. Right now, they’re drafting me to get in the paint, get rebounds, protect the paint. Obviously, you saw in my shooting drills I can shoot. I can do stuff like that if you ask me to.

“But it all just comes down to what the team asks me to do at the end of the day.”

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