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Grizzlies Draft Purdue's Zach Edey with 9th Overall Pick

Grizzlies Draft Purdue's Zach Edey with 9th Overall Pickillustration

Following an exceptional college basketball career, Zach Edey has been selected in the Draft.

The Memphis Grizzlies chose Edey as the 9th overall pick in the first round of Wednesday night's draft. Standing at 7-foot-4, the Toronto native becomes this year's tallest draftee, capping off a remarkable tenure highlighted by consecutive national player of the year awards and a recent NCAA championship game appearance with Purdue.

The Grizzlies had targeted a center with their top pick and explored trading up to the 6th spot with the Charlotte Hornets. When negotiations fell through and UConn's Donovan Clingan was picked 7th by the , Edey emerged as their preferred choice.

After Purdue's loss to UConn in the national championship game, Edey declared for the . Despite eligibility remaining due to the pandemic, the 22-year-old opted to transition to the professional ranks as anticipated by Purdue.

During his time with Purdue, Edey played a pivotal role in their success, including consecutive Big Ten regular-season titles and back-to-back NCAA tournament No. 1 seeds. Despite an early exit in 2023, Purdue rebounded strongly to reach the Final Four and the championship game this season, falling short to UConn.

Edey's on-court performance was stellar, averaging 25.2 points per game last season, leading the nation in scoring, along with 12.2 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. His achievement of consecutive national player of the year awards hadn't been matched since Ralph Sampson's three-peat from 1981-83.

Initially projected as a second-round pick, Edey's draft stock surged post-tournament and at the combine, securing his position as a lottery prospect by draft day.

Edey's development has been evident, showcasing versatility beyond his defensive prowess and dominance in the paint. While his transition to the NBA may require adjustment time, the Grizzlies are optimistic about his upward trajectory based on his collegiate achievements.

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