EMMANUEL Mudiay said he learned a lot playing pro basketball in China.
Mudiay, selected at No. 7 by the Denver Nuggets in the NBA rookie draft, played against the likes of Gilas Pilipinas naturalized player Andray Blatche in China's professional basketball league after deciding to join the Guangdong Southern Tigers instead of playing collegiate basketball.
And the experience, Mudiay believes, will help him when he plays for the Nuggets.
“It means a lot playing overseas,” Mudiay said during the Cisco Telepresence with foreign reporters on Friday. “They welcomed me with open arms. It’s a big part of me. I learned so much with the physicality over there and the determination to win.”
Mudiay, who averaged 18 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.9 assists, and 1.6 steals this past season, said the physicality in the CBA helped toughen his game.
“China is very physical. The refs, you can’t be a little boy out there. It definitely helped coming back in the States," he said. “Handcheck is a foul here. Over there, handcheck is like nothing.”
Mudiay said he also got advices from former NBA players who played in China.
“I talked to a lot of NBA guys. They told me what to expect, how to carry yourself and how to approach practice and games,” said Mudiay.
Did he got advice from Blatche?
“Not really. But I spoke to him,” said Mudiay.