Zach Collins Rumors

All NBA Players
#33
Zach Collins
Zach Collins
Position: C
Born: 11/17/97
Height: 6-11 / 2.11
Weight:232 lbs. / 105.2 kg.
Salary: $4,240,200
“It’s two-fold,” Neil Olshey said Wednesday. “On one hand, I’m excited to see our guys play again. You know, the season ended so abruptly, we were just getting healthy. We were three days from getting ‘Nurk’ (Jusuf Nurkic) back and Zach (Collins) was on the horizon — he was about three weeks out from returning. At that point, Trevor (Ariza) was in the starting lineup, so the exciting thing is to see the guys out playing basketball again. I missed basketball.”
Collins was originally hoping to return in March and he’s pushed himself through rehabilitation sessions and individual basketball workouts throughout the coronavirus crisis, so the news was not surprising. But for it to finally become official was momentous. “When my doc came in and said my shoulder feels like a normal shoulder, that I was good to go, it was like a weight was lifted,” Collins said. “I tell people all the time that he whole rehab process isn’t difficult. It’s just very long and boring. The worst part is not being on the road with the team, not being around them every day, feeling disconnected. It’s weird. Odd. So, mentally, it’s a big struggle. I’m just super excited to be back and know that I can do everything again.”
Randle is not alone in enrolling in the program. More than 35 NBA players—including names such as Andre Drummond, Lou Williams and Zach Collins—have joined him and are taking classes with Yellowbrick, doing so in a range of topics such as “Fundamentals of Global Sports Management,” “Music Industry Essentials,” “Sneaker Essentials” and “Streetwear Essentials.” Along with their Yellowbrick partnership, the NBA also recently offered a MasterClass subscription to its players, giving them access to hundreds of video lessons from top experts across a wide range of industries. (As an example of the quality of MasterClass instructors, Stephen Curry teaches a class on shooting where he also offers in-game execution tips).
This has put Collins in a tough spot, as the one thing left on his list for rehab was full contact, basketball action. In an interview for Trail Blazers Courtside, the Blazers’ big man gave Rip City an update on his rehab. I definitely think I am on the right track. Right now it’s tough because the last part of my development was playing and we can’t play right now. I’m just trying to simulate that as much as I can right now without going through contact with other players. It feels really good. Like I said before,.I haven’t really had any setbacks in my rehab. From day one it’s all been pretty smooth, it’s just a long process. But it feels great. I’m really happy with where I’m at. – Zach Collins
Storyline: Zach Collins Injury
Everywhere you looked, there were positive signs in regard to injured players. There was Zach Collins, going through on-court drills with a basketball — shooting short jumpers and even left-handed layups — as he recovers from a torn labrum. No full workout with the team yet, but on the court and even shooting with his (injured) left arm. At the other end of the court, there was CJ McCollum working out with coaches — running full speed as he shot and went through defensive drills — as he recovers from a sprained ankle.
Storyline: Zach Collins Injury
Zach Collins didn’t know it at the time, but that October night in Dallas, when he bowed his head and nearly cried in an empty locker room, his life was beginning to change for the better. The Trail Blazers starting power forward had just learned that his dislocated left shoulder, suffered in the third quarter of the team’s third game, would keep him out weeks, if not months — and if that didn’t take hold of his Adam’s Apple, the next few days would. For the next six days, he would wrestle with MRI results, second opinions, third opinions, and decisions of whether to have surgery or just rehabilitate the shoulder. He ultimately opted for surgery to repair a torn labrum, and he is not expected back on the court until March at the earliest.
Somewhere between the haze of dashed dreams and the post-surgery pity parties, Collins was confronted by what many professional athletes encounter during a major injury: an identity crisis. During most of his 21 years, basketball was the most defining element of his life. It was what he was best at, how he was recognized, how he managed his stress, and how he viewed himself. And now, basketball was gone until the spring, leaving him with a harrowing question: Who was he? “What else do you have?” Collins remembers asking himself. “And I realized, I don’t have much.”
What does “disciplined” mean, exactly? “The discipline comes in that the starting lineup next year is Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Rodney Hood, Zach Collins and Jusuf Nurkic,” Olshey said. “And we are going to get there. Now, some of those guys will be back this year, and some won’t. But what we are not going to do is give away long-term assets that can help get this team to where we really want to be — and where we thought we were back in September — for some incremental upgrade today.”
As far as teams that could pop up as potential Aldridge suitors, HoopsHype asked various NBA executives for their thoughts on the matter, and one of the first landing spots that was mentioned was a familiar team for the big man: “The Portland Trail Blazers could make sense,” a Western Conference exec told us. “Would Portland give up Hassan Whiteside plus Zach Collins or a pick?”
Storyline: LaMarcus Aldridge Trade?
As Anthony told The Athletic: “I got the call saying, ‘Portland is interested, what are you thinking?’ I just said, ‘Look, I’ve been in this situation before. Just tell me when it’s something we can really make happen. Tell me when it’s real.’ “It really wasn’t any conversations. I was continuing to go on with life and hanging with my fam and doing my other business ventures. Then Dame called me. CJ (McCollum) called me. Zach called me. Everybody, a lot of people texted me and called me. But it had to be something that I felt comfortable with and that they felt comfortable with. We got on the phone, got comfortable and went from there.”
Olshey, who orchestrated Anthony’s signing to mask the hole left by the injury to starter Zach Collins and the ineffectiveness of offseason signings Mario Hezonja and Anthony Tolliver, offered a quid pro quo to Anthony’s camp. “Carmelo needs an empowering and welcoming environment with a defined role that embraces his skill set on the floor and his presence in the locker room,” Olshey said. “And we need a player that can generate production from the power forward position, can alleviate defensive pressure on Dame and CJ and be trusted to make plays at critical moments in close games.”
Zach Collins: Yeah. Like you said, every year since I’ve been here, the analysts say that we’re not even going to make the playoffs, and then we get the three-seed in back-to-back years. So, to us, it’s just white noise. I mean, we don’t really pay attention to it. And if we do, it’s just motivation, like you said, embracing that underdog role. But we never really consider ourselves underdogs. We always consider ourselves the best team in the West, one of the best teams in the NBA. So for us, it’s not really ever like a conversation about how they’re counting us out and how we’ve got to prove them wrong. It’s always about how this is the year and we have the guys in the locker room to compete for a championship. So what they say about us, we don’t really converse about – we’re on our own path. Inside that locker room, we’re all together and we’re going into this season with one goal and that’s to win a championship, regardless of what everybody else is saying.
Skal Labissiere said he’s never been on a team that has had a player as accomplished as Gasol at his position. “I grew up watching him. I remember being in Haiti, in front of my little TV and just watching Pau Gasol,” said Labissiere, who is in his second season with the Blazers. “I told him already, I’m like, `Man, I want to work with you throughout the year and learn some things.’”
Gasol, who prides himself on his longevity and ability to change with the game, is embracing the new role. “I’m excited to work with these guys, with Zach, with Skal, and kind of share the mindset and attitude that I’ve had throughout my career as far as getting better, as far as going out there and giving your best, knowing that some nights it’s gonna go better than others, putting in the work, taking it seriously, doing whatever it takes, handling the emotions the ups and downs of the season _ which you know sometimes can be challenging,” he said. “So within all that I’m gonna be there.”
With Collins’ sneaky athleticism he had officials apologizing and admitting they, at times, had wrongfully called a foul. “There were a couple of plays where I’d block a shot and the ref would come up to me and apologize to me and say, ‘well, you were so far away from the play, we didn’t think that you’d be able to get there, so it was a foul’.” Collins went onto say, “which I understand… I don’t think it’s like a respect thing, but hopefully they’ll know me better and they’ll know that maybe I could get there this time.”
Now that Collins has turned 21 and has put two NBA seasons in the books, he reflected on how he has changed over the last two years. “I would say I’m probably the same kid,” Collins said. “In some ways I’ve matured a lot and I think I’ve kind of learned to be a little bit more patient. I’m always my biggest critic, and I think that’s something that I always kind of struggled with growing up being a little too hard on myself sometimes and I still find myself doing that, but that’s probably one thing that I made the most strides in, is giving myself a break here and there and learning to smell the roses every once in awhile. Just appreciate where I’m at and so in that regard, I think I’ve changed for the better a little bit, but I’m still the same goofy kid that hangs out with the same friends all the time.”