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Paolo Banchero on his college experience - "I love Duke, but I felt like a zoo animal”

Paolo Banchero opened up on his interesting college experiences during his short time at Duke
Paolo Banchero on his college experience

Paolo Banchero

Paolo Banchero has quickly taken the NBA by storm in his rookie season with the Orlando Magic. Banchero immediately assumed a huge role with the Magic and has promptly shown the rest of the league why he was the first overall pick of the 2022 NBA Draft. With Banchero leading the way, the Magic are hopeful their rebuild can begin taking shape.

Banchero has had success adapting to the NBA because of what he experienced in college at Duke

Banchero’s transition to the NBA has been seamless so far, which isn’t always the case for rookies. Banchero is scoring at a high clip and has tons of room to grow within Orlando’s offense. A big reason Banchero has found success in the league so soon is because of the experience he had playing basketball at Duke.

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Banchero was well known around campus for being a basketball star, which impacted Banchero’s college experience. Banchero had to quickly learn how to deal with the fame that comes with being a star college basketball player, but it wasn’t an easy process. Banchero said he loved his time with Duke but claimed he felt like a zoo animal due to how people treated him during his time there.

Banchero offers an interesting outlook on his college experience

College can be an interesting time for athletes hoping to enter the NBA. The best of the bunch are only hoping to stick around for one season before declaring for the NBA Draft, meaning that their time at the school is focused more on basketball than schoolwork. That’s the case for most NBA athletes regardless, but for players who go the one-and-done route, it becomes amplified to a much higher degree.

Adapting to the fame that comes with being a national superstar is tough, and that was something Banchero had to adjust to once he went to Duke. He was well-known in high school, but everything changes once you get that exposure in college. From the sounds of it, it wasn’t something that Banchero was prepared for or necessarily enjoyed.

The good news is that Banchero learned how to deal with that fame and attention, and it’s helped with his smooth transition to the NBA. The Magic likely won’t win much this year, but with Banchero leading the way, that may change in the future, and if it does, Banchero can credit his college experience with Duke for helping him out.

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