Following Strong Summer League, Koumadje Earns Deal

by Lauren Rosen

When Christ Koumadje signed his first pro contract over the weekend, it held major significance not just for Koumadje, but for many others.

The transaction could mean that Koumadje makes history, as he has the chance to become the first player from Chad to play in the league.

At his pre-draft workout at the 76ers Training Complex back in June, the 7-foot-4 Koumadje discussed the importance of that piece of history.

“It definitely would mean a lot for my people, for my brothers and sister, for the neighborhood, and stuff like that. It would mean a lot,” the N’djamena native said.

During his four seasons at Florida State (where he was the tallest athlete in program history), Koumadje improved considerably. 

Prior to his move to the States, Koumadje played soccer and ran track. He attributes his quick footwork to his soccer background.

“I’ve always been a guy that moves around, playing soccer growing up,” Koumadje said, adding that as he begins his professional career, “I definitely can have an impact.”

Koumadje backed that statement up at Summer League, where he contributed 6.0 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks per game in just 13.7 minutes. He shot 63.2% from the field.

The big man, who played high school basketball with Ben Simmons at Montverde Academy, capitalized on his combined size and quickness in the tournament, impressing summer league head coach Connor Johnson.

“The way he moves, and the way he picks things up - being a 7-foot-4 player like he is - there are things to be excited about,” Johnson said.

Though Koumadje dealt with a learning curve common among first-time Summer League players, Johnson felt the experience was valuable.

“It’s good for Christ to understand what it’s going to be like as a rim protector, how he can impact the game,” Johnson said.

For Koumadje, those opportunities to impact the game figure to only continue as he embarks on this next phase on his meaningful journey.

 

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