With the third pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, the Philadelphia 76ers selected Jahlil Okafor. Today, I caught up with Jahlil Okafor for a chat via Cisco TelePresence along with other members of the International media, just moments after Adam Silver called his name. Here’s what he had to say:
Congratulations Jahlil, this must be a dream come true… Or even the beginning of a new dream for you and your family?
This is a dream come true. For all of us. I’ve worked hard to get to this point. My family have witnessed how hard I have worked my entire life so we’re all extremely excited and I’m just ready to be done with all this so I can go celebrate with my family!
In your eyes, what will be the biggest challenge facing you in the next step of your career?
I don’t really know. I don’t know what to expect. I’ll be working as hard as I can to try and be successful in this league. I’ve talked to a bunch of guys in the NBA… I’ve heard a bunch of positive things, I’ve got a bunch of advice so hopefully I can overcome any obstacle.
Have you had a chance to talk much yet with the Sixers organisation and how excited are they to have you coming across?
Yeah I’ve talked to the coach (Brett Brown) and I’ve talked to the GM (Sam Hinkie) and they both said they were surprised that I was still on the draft board. They said that they were the ‘luckiest people in the world’ so that was great to hear and i’m excited to get down there and start working.
I guess you and Joel Embiid are going to form a pretty clinical partnership then?
That’s my guy! That’s my brother right there! Oh yeah.
Who are you most excited to play against in the league?
Ah, Tim Duncan. He’s a guy that I idolised growing up. So he’s definitely a guy that I’m looking forward to playing. I respect him so much and I’ve learned so much from him watching him play.
What advice did Coach K give you prior to the Draft?
He just told me to have fun with it. He was supporting me and just basically said to have fun.
What are your thoughts on the 76ers roster right now?
I’m excited about it. I know some of the guys on the roster already… Jerami Grant, Nerlens Noel, Joel Embiid. Those are three guys that I know prior to going down there. I feel like i’ll have a good feel for it and fit in well.