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Mohamed Bamba values fit in Phoenix with Suns, thinks ‘it’s all there for me’


PHOENIX — One of the most unique prospects in the NBA Draft is Texas center Mohamed Bamba.

Now, you might be thinking, that’s because he has a 7-foot-10 wingspan.

That’s true and is unique, but Bamba’s personality and intelligence level always shine through when he speaks and that was the case again when he was in for a draft workout with the Phoenix Suns on Saturday.

“He’s a super bright guy,” Suns general manager Ryan McDonough said. “One of the smarter guys I’ve seen in the last 10 or 15 years come through the pre-draft process.”

Bamba displayed that level of smarts and attention to detail when he specifically broke down how he’s changed his shooting approach.

In terms of his shot release, Bamba said he changed his release point from a 122-degree angle to a 105-degree angle, which he provided a live demonstration for.

Bamba was very positive about the workout.

“The workout was awesome,” he said. “At the very tail end of it when we were coming in and bringing it in as a group and coming to the conclusion of it, I told them regardless of whatever happened today it feels like I got better today.”

At 6-foot-11 with those incredibly long arms, Bamba averaged 12.9 points, 10.5 rebounds and 3.7 blocks a game.

That interior presence is what Bamba banks on as his biggest NBA contribution.

Currently, Bamba is not in the conversation at the No. 1 spot in Phoenix but is ranked the No. 3 prospect by ESPN.

Like Marvin Bagley III and Deandre Ayton, who were in for workouts earlier in the week, Bamba answered if he feels he should be the top pick. In no surprise, though, he differed from the other two and responded in his own way.

“My whole thing is to put it in very short sentences: I do more and I require less,” he said. “The Suns are more than a perfect fit for me because it fits with how they are rebuilding and how I kind of want to develop myself and have a full impact coming on as a rookie. It’s just a perfect fit. It’s more so about fit then it is about the pick, for me.”

Bamba has looked at the specific pieces in Phoenix and sees it as seamless.

“Right off the bat when you’re talking impact and how I fit on the team I look at guys like Josh (Jackson),” he said. “He’s a great on-the-ball defender, he’s a young guy and he’s still learning the ropes of the league, but I think having him on the ball and having me back there protecting the rim would be a lethal weapon.

“And then you have guys like T.J. (Warren) and Devin (Booker) and I get a vet like Tyson. It’s all there for me. It’s all there for me. I truly believe this is a good place, a good landing spot.”


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