Future Watch: Mohamed Bamba Rookie Basketball Cards, Magic
Heading into the 2018-19 season, the Orlando Magic are now ten years removed from their last NBA finals appearance. The past decade has been tough for fans in Orlando, but there may be hope on the horizon. In Mohamed “Mo” Bamba, sixth overall pick in the 2018 draft, the Magic have a defensive anchor in their frontcourt who can be a key part of their return to success.
Bamba was born in 1998 in Harlem New York. His parents, Lancine Bamba and Aminata Bamba both emigrated to the United States from the Ivory Coast. Mo developed a love for basketball at an early age after seeing how popular the game was in Harlem. He played most of his high school career for Westtown School in Westtown, Pennsylvania. In his junior season, he averaged 14 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks per game. Scout.com, Rivals, 247Sports and ESPN all ranked Bamba as a five-star college recruit. He chose to play college ball for the University of Texas, choosing the Longhorns over Kentucky, Duke and Michigan.
At Texas, Bamba played in 29 games, starting in 28 of them. He played 30.2 minutes per game, and averaged 12.9 points, 10.4 rebounds and 3.7 blocks per game. His best game came in a win against Ole Miss when he scored 25 points with 15 rebounds. Following Texas’s loss to Nevada in the 2018 NCAA Tournament, Bamba declared himself eligible for the 2018 NBA Draft.
Heading into the draft, Bamba was seen as a surefire lottery pick. He measured 7’0.75” in shoes with an incredible 7’10” wingspan at the combine. Scouts were enamored with his shot blocking and ability to play above the rim. For his height, he’s a bit skinny at 226-pounds, but he runs the floor well for rim run opportunities in transition. He shot just 28% from behind the arc in college, but he has shown a willingness to increase his range at the NBA level. On draft night, Orlando selected Bamba with the 6th overall pick.
Check out Mo Bamba’s interview with Russ Cohen at the 2018 Panini NBA Rookie Showcase
Expectations for the Magic are low to start the season, but there is a lot of enthusiasm for this rookie. As the season goes on, he should get solid minutes that could increase as he gets more comfortable on the court. Fans in Orlando are already excited for what he brings to their team. Once he gets comfortable and puts up a few highlight plays, national attention will grow.
You can find Mohamed Bamba rookie cards in 2018 Panini Contenders Draft Picks Collegiate Basketball. Look for rookie cards featuring him in his Orlando Magic uniform in 2018-19 Hoops and Certified.
Follow him on Twitter @TheRealMoBamba.
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