Stardom usually starts early for an NBA basketball player. They are highly accomplished athletes from AAU to high school, but in this case Paolo Banchero It was the opposite.
He experienced none of that until he began his college career at Duke.
Banchero joins fellow Orlando Magic teammate RJ Hampton on his new podcast with FUBO Sports Network to explain their personal stories of being selected No. 1 overall in the 2022 NBA Draft out of Duke. sitting
“It was totally different. In high school you’re highly regarded but by the time you’re older everyone knows you. [in that town] There, so nobody sees you as a big superstar,” said Banchero, a McDonald’s All-American from Odia High School in Seattle. Through the podcast. “I was able to go to the mall, go out to eat anywhere and not be bothered. But going to Duke was completely different.
The 6-foot-10, 250-pound rookie got culture shock when he stepped on campus in Durham, N.C. Bunchero received the celebrity treatment most prospects get at 16 or 17 years old.
“Going to Duke, if you played on the basketball team, they treated you like royalty.” “It took a lot of getting used to, but it helped me prepare for the NBA. I love Duke, but sometimes it felt like I was a zoo animal.”
Banchero had to deal with other students secretly recording him in class and strangers knocking on his dorm door at random on Sunday mornings. The transition initially surprises Bunchiro, but the attention he’s starting to get with Magic feels familiar.
After Auburn forward Jabari Smith (Houston Rockets) and Gonzaga center Chet Holmgren (Oklahoma City Thunder), the Magic surprisingly selected Banchero when he was projected to go No. 3.
He became the fourth No. 1 pick in franchise history. He also became the fourth No. 1 to score 20-plus points in his first three NBA games.
But how did this surprise happen?
The answer was magic strategy.
“It was a wild week. Throughout the draft process, I’ve been thinking about going to Houston. I visited OKC and Houston, I didn’t even visit Orlando,” Banchero said. It was funny because every report was saying that the Magic weren’t really considering me, but when I talked to the Magic during draft week, they told me that was never the case and that the report basically was wrong.”
Banchero then had his name called by NBA commissioner Adam Silver on draft night. He was the top choice. The secrecy of the magic draft was so close to the vest that Banchero and his family were unaware of their intentions until they read the subtitles on the television screen.
“I was backstage 30 minutes before the draft and the TV was silent, but the subtitles were on. That’s when I saw my picture up there and it said I was overrated by the Magic,” he said. “Then I taped my parents and everyone was shocked, my heart started pounding,” Banchero said.
With the Magic starting 0-4, the rookie is still showing the promise and intangibles the organization needs for long-term success. They are sure that he is a winner and that they have chosen the right man.