Two games into the PBA, Hamady N’Diaye knew he had to adjust to the confines of the league.
The physicality allowed is off the charts. Every game is a war. No matter how tough it was for the native of Senegal, he took the challenge and eventually, every bruise, scar, or wound he received became a badge.
Drafted in the second round of the 2010 NBA Draft, N’Diaye never really found a place to settle, hopping from one team to another. A year ago, injuries dashed his hopes of making it big.
But with an entire PBA conference in his bag, N’Diaye is grateful to have the Philippines as a training ground, and targets a return to the NBA.
“My goal is to get back in the NBA. This was to see if I was still injured or if I am okay. Now, I am definitely fine. It was a good way to get my confidence back and make another run to the NBA. I am weighing my options and I will see the best deal for me,” N’Diaye said.
“By the time I got here to now, I personally improved a lot on the court and off the court. It taught me to be a good leader and the environment, I just love it.”
N’Diaye was already a teenager when he immersed himself to hoops, working tirelessly to achieve his goals. N’Diaye made the roster of Rutgers University and took off from there, believing in himself every step of the way.
“I worked extremely hard off the court when nobody is looking. I wanted to see what my best potential is in the end. I don’t look at anyone else. It’s just personal, I want to become better every single game. I have gotten so much better so I feel I got ways to go. That’s what motivates me. I know I am not the best player yet but I know I can get there,” he shared.
The Philippine experience has pushed him to become better, and with the goal of returning to the NBA, he will always look back at how the Kia Carnival helped him realize he can still rise.
“It’s an amazing experience. Everyone that I have spoken to. The physicality was tough and you have to control yourself. It was hard to adjust but I knew my potential and I kept working hard to get better. Next year, I know I can be better. I do not have a limit to my game,” he said.
“Of all the places, I love it here because it helped me improve my game.”