Gonzaga big man Chet Holmgren spoke with Yahoo Sports’ Krysten Peek in New York City about potentially being the No. 1 overall pick in Thursday’s NBA draft. Chet joined Yahoo Sports thanks to Phillips Norelco, as part of its One Blade campaign.
KRYSTEN PEEK: I’m Krysten Peek, NBA draft analyst for Yahoo Sports, here with Chet Holmgren. We’re in Brooklyn, New York. Chet is with us with Philips Norelco. Chet, how is this whole draft process been going? What are your emotions going into this week?
CHET HOLMGREN: Man, it’s been great, and going into this week, I’ve been ecstatic. It’s been a long time leading up to this, and I’m excited for Thursday.
KRYSTEN PEEK: Have you been able to stay present and enjoy the process, or has it gone by in a blur?
CHET HOLMGREN: I’d say both. I’m big on staying where my feet are and enjoying the moment because it does go fast. And it has gone fast, but I feel like I’ve done a good job.
KRYSTEN PEEK: You’ve been one of the projected players at the top of the draft all season long, with Paolo Banchero and Jabari Smith. What sets you apart from those two players, and why do you think you’re the best player in this draft class?
CHET HOLMGREN: At the end of the day, I feel like those are both great players, along with myself, and I feel like any team that picks me can get a great player who’s conducive to winning. Whatever’s asked of me to help the team win, I feel like I can go out and execute.
KRYSTEN PEEK: We’ll find out on Thursday. But with the number one pick, Orlando Magic, your teammate from high school, and AAU teammate, Jalen Suggs is there. I feel like the stars are kind of aligning. What have the conversations been like between the two of you?
CHET HOLMGREN: I mean, at the end of the day, were buddies, so, you know, we just be talking about whatever. We talk basketball. We talk life, whatever it might be. But at the end of the day, decision’s not up to either of us. So you know, if– whether we’re wearing the same jersey or not, we’re going to go out on the court and have fun.
KRYSTEN PEEK: Your dad once showed me a photo of the two of you. I think it was in fifth or sixth grade, and you wear the exact same height. When did you hit that big growth spurt?
CHET HOLMGREN: I think eighth grade was when I was noticeably taller than him.
KRYSTEN PEEK: How many inches do you grow in a year?
CHET HOLMGREN: I think six that year.
KRYSTEN PEEK: Very Anthony Davis of you. OK, At? Number two is the Oklahoma City Thunder. Sam Presti is obviously building something there. You’ve got Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Josh Giddey in the backcourt. What excites you about being that offensive threat in the pick and roll option with those two guards?
CHET HOLMGREN: You said it, you said it best. It’s exciting to think about playing with those two guys, obviously, both great players. You know, Shai can get wherever he wants, with no matter who’s on the court. He does not need help from anybody to get where he wants to go, and Josh is a very high IQ, instinctual player that plays great off other guys and helps other guys, as well. So I think we both, we both would make each other’s lives easy.
KRYSTEN PEEK: Make it easier, that’s the goal, right? Houston at three, I know Jalen Green from USA basketball, playing back in high school with him. And also, they’ve got a young guy and Kevin Porter, Jr. What do you like about the possible fit there?
CHET HOLMGREN: Another great option with great players, you know, they can put the ball in the basket in a hurry. They make exciting plays, and I feel like I could fit in and make exciting plays, as well.
KRYSTEN PEEK: What do you anticipate your emotions being on draft night in a couple of nights?
CHET HOLMGREN: I do not know. Until it happens, I do not know, but it’ll be all good emotions, for sure.
KRYSTEN PEEK: And you’re here in partnership with Phillips Norelco. What are you doing here today leading into the draft, and how excited are you to be partnering with them?
CHET HOLMGREN: I’m beyond excited to partner with Phillips Norelco and be a part of there they’re one blade campaign. You know, I like to keep a clean look with the way I dress, as well as the way I groom. And you know, Phillips One Blade helps me do that safely. They have nick and cut-resistant products. They’re waterproof, as well. You know, everything you need in a grooming, grooming tool, they got.
KRYSTEN PEEK: All right, well Chet, thank you so much for your time, and good luck.
CHET HOLMGREN: Thank you very much.