On the latest episode of "Hustle Play with Chris Boucher", Raptors rookie Christian Koloko explains why he was so excited to be drafted by Toronto. The full episode can be watched on our YouTube channel or listened to on the Hustle Play podcast feed. Photo credit: Louis Eng
- Let me ask you this-- on draft night, right--
CHRISTIAN KOLOKO: Yeah.
- --I saw you-- since we're talking about advice-- I saw you with friends and family.
CHRISTIAN KOLOKO: Yeah.
- Right? What was that experience like, first of all, when you heard your name get called by the Raptors?
CHRISTIAN KOLOKO: It was crazy, man, it was crazy. Just me coming from where I come from-- Pascal and Joel Embiid, they're the two-- only people that made it this far. And you know, draft night was a crazy, crazy night. Because you don't know where you're going. You don't know where you're going.
I was just sitting there with my family. And I had no idea where I was going. But I kind of knew, like, if I was falling to the second round, like, the Raptors were going to pick me. But I wasn't sure. You can't be sure.
So when they called my name, I was like-- I was just happy, man. I was just happy. And I just saw my family and my parents, my family, friends, they started jumping around. And I was just looking at each other like, man, it's actually happening right now. I'm going to be an NBA player right now. So it was really amazing, for sure.
- Did Masai come to your mind?
CHRISTIAN KOLOKO: Yeah, definitely, definitely. And right after my agent called me, I think it was, like, the 28th pick. And he told me, oh, we're not going first round. And right after that, I just start thinking about-- yeah, I talked with the Raptors.
And I had an interview with the Raptors [? at ?] the NBA [? Draft ?] [? Combine ?] in Chicago, you know? And that was my best interview, to be honest. Because I just went there, we didn't even talk about basketball, to be honest. Like, we just-- like, some other teams, they're going to ask you some crazy questions and stuff like that. I want you to--
- Like what? Give us an example.
CHRISTIAN KOLOKO: They're going to ask you just some crazy questions like-- I don't know, just to make you feel bad or something like that. And I just went to the Raptors, and they told me, bro, we know everything about you. We don't need to ask you any questions.
I was just like-- I was like, what? What do you guys mean, you know everything about me? And then we just start talking about, like-- they showed an old video of me working out when I was back home and stuff like that, and when-- like, my progression from Basketball Without Borders to right now.
And so like, it's just-- that's why I was so happy when they drafted me. Because you want to go somewhere where the people care about you. And they know a little bit about me already. And they just want me to be the best version of myself. So it was really--