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Pascal Siakam Reveals He Studied Kevin Durant And Tracy McGrady To Get Better At Basketball

Pascal Siakam Reveals He Studied Kevin Durant And Tracy McGrady To Get Better At Basketball

Pascal Siakam's journey to the NBA wasn't easy, but the Cameroonian player fought hard and made it to the association. Most importantly, Siakam became an NBA champion two years ago and played a big role in that championship run. 

He was once considered one of the best big men in the league, but his level has decreased since the 2018/19 campaign. Still, that doesn't mean he is a bad player, as he can still recover his best level. 

Talking with JJ Redick on his 'The Old Man and the Three' podcast, Siakam recalled his beginnings in the game and revealing he always tried to be different than the rest of the players. 

"Early on I didn't watch that much basketball, so in my head, I'm just like... Coming in I always see African kids, you get to a certain level and like you big, you're pretty tall and it's like you on the post, you run, you dunk. And early on, I have always thought, I wish I can do more... I wanted to be different, I never wanted to do the same thing," Siakam said.

Moreover, the 2019 NBA champion studied great players to learn and improve his game. Fortunately, he found Kevin Durant and Tracy McGrady, who indirectly became Siakam's teachers. 

"I always watch players that can handle the ball, like Kevin Durant or Tracy McGrady... Anything I could find really, I think at that point, I just wanted to find anybody that's that tall and can handle the ball... It was a dream, obviously, cos I'm nowhere near those players. But in my head, it was always like yo, I wanna be different."

Learning from Durant (a 7-footer with point guard-like handles) and Tracy McGrady is not easy. Pascal did it, though, and that helped him make himself a known name in the league. He's a hybrid that nobody can classify.

Siakam hasn't been the same he was in 2018/19, but the Raptors organization still hopes to see him picking up his level and helping them compete for important things again. During that magical season, he was named the Most Improved Player of the Year after posting 16.9 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game.

He hasn't played in every game this season for the Raptors, but still, Pascal has managed to post interesting numbers. He currently averages 18.1 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 12 appearances.