HoopsHype CJ McCollum rumors

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“Going into my senior year, I was just talking to him a lot and then I had my foot injury,” McCollum said. “I reached out to him [because he had dealt with a similar injury] and asked him about the rehab and Damian basically told me, ‘I’m hearing that you’re going to go top 10 so don’t even worry about returning’ and stuff like that. He was telling me how I could recover and shared some of the exercises that he did – what he did on the training table, what he was lifting, what he was doing. It was very helpful. “When I recovered, I went to the NBA Draft Lottery and he was there, so I got to talk to him and I think that was the first time that I actually met him in person. There, I talked to him a little bit more about the NBA, what it was about and what to expect at the combine, what to expect at Summer League and stuff like that.” Basketball Insiders

January 18, 2014 Updates

This season, Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum are playing alongside one another in the Portland Trail Blazers’ backcourt. What most people don’t know is that the two young guards have been friends for years. Lillard and McCollum bonded because of their similarities. They are both guards who came from small schools, where they were asked to carry the scoring load for their team. They are about the same size, and both suffered a foot injury just as their collegiate careers were taking off. They are also very similar personality-wise, with plenty of confidence and a me-against-the-world mentality since they overcame the odds to make it to the NBA. Lillard averaged 24.5 points, five rebounds, four assists and 1.5 steals in his final year Weber State, while McCollum averaged 23.9 points, five rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.4 steals in his final year at Lehigh. Basketball Insiders

“I actually met Damian through Twitter,” McCollum told Basketball Insiders. “A friend of mine who I had met awhile back put me in touch with him and then we just started exchanging DMs and exchanged numbers. Then, we kept in touch. I reached out to him because he was in a position where I wanted to be, heading to the NBA and being projected as a top 10 pick from a small school. I kind of wanted to pick his brain a little bit and see what it takes to get to the next level and what it was all like for him. We just kept exchanging messages on and off, on and off, just touching base and exchanging workouts. I started doing some research on him and studying his moves.” Basketball Insiders

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