Collins talks draft decision and NBA dreams - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Collins talks draft decision and NBA dreams

SPOKANE, Wash. - After announcing his decision to declare for the 2017 NBA Draft, Gonzaga freshman Zach Collins is getting ready to start a new chapter in his life.

During the Bulldogs' historic season in 2016-17, Collins averaged 10.0 points and 5.9 rebounds per game, ranking eighth in the country in field goal percentage. Collins didn't start for Gonzaga but rose on draft boards throughout the season, now sitting as high as 11th overall in some mock drafts.

"I've been hearing the same thing, 8-20 for the most part," Collins says of draft projections. "A lot of people say I've got to develop before the draft in order to get there. I'm ready for that, I'm ready to start getting workouts in and working out in front of teams so they can see what I can do with the ball. Just really looking forward to starting the whole process."

Collins has heard it all since announcing he will declare for the draft on Tuesday.

"I've been hearing a lot of stuff about how I'm not ready and how I should come back and develop more. To them, I just say thank you. It's going to motivate me to work harder and be the player they don't think I am."

The decision wasn't an easy one for Collins, who hasn't signed with an agent yet but plans to, and will become Gonzaga's first ever one-and-done when he does.

"There's always a thought that you could come back and try to be the number one pick or a top-five pick, but at the same time you never know. This could be your only opportunity. You never know what could happen next year. With all that considered I thought this was the best move I could make."

After hearing from everyone about his decision, Collins is now waiting to hear one more thing -- his name called in the NBA Draft on June 22.

"This is the biggest stage in the world, and it's been a dream of mine forever so I'm just really happy that I get to finally pursue it."

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