Wendell Carter Jr. poses with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after being drafted seventh overall by the Chicago Bulls during the 2018 NBA Draft at the Barclays Center on June 21, 2018 in New York City.
Photo: Mike Stobe/Getty Images
Photo: Mike Stobe/Getty Images

Wendell Carter Jr. discusses connection to Atlanta, move to NBA

Former Duke forward Wendell Carter, Jr. successfully entered the next chapter of his basketball career Thursday when he was drafted by the Chicago Bulls seventh-overall in the 2018 NBA Draft.

Before being drafted, however, the former Pace Academy student wrote a letter in “The Players’ Tribune” titled “Ready to Fly” in which he discussed how his family, especially his father, encouraged him to work hard enough to earn the opportunities he’s currently being given in the NBA.

Carter also discussed how special the city of Atlanta is to him, especially Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport where both his parents worked and where he spent so much time over the past few months while traveling to try out for NBA teams.


“My parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins — they all go to work every day,” Carter wrote. “And I can’t recall a single time that I ever heard one of them complain. Life is always about hard work and caring about the people close to you... The real payoff is that unbreakable bond you share with each other. A family forever. Prepared for anything.

“So yeah, I think I’m ready for life in the NBA. Because like everything in my life so far, I know that I won’t have to go through it alone.”

Carter averaged 13.5 points, 9.1 rebounds, two assists and 2.1 blocks in his freshman year at Duke.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.