MISSOULA, Mont. - Will Cherry's career at the University of Montana may have come to an end, but his day's of playing basketball are far from over. Cherry was invited to play in the NBA Summer League with the New Orleans Pelicans. Cherry is one of 12 players to make the summer league squad and he says he's ready to prove that he can play at the next level.
"I'm definitely excited for this chance to go out and play against top notch level competition, and prove to them that I belong on this stage," said Cherry. "Right now it's not really too much jitters or anything, I'm just pretty much staying pretty level headed and going in there with the mindset of it's just basketball."
During the summer league Cherry has to show NBA teams that he can adjust from college basketball to the pros. His former team knows if anybody can make it on an NBA roster it's Cherry.
"Nothing would surprise me with Will because he works so hard and he sets lofty goals and I know he's got a chance to achieve them" said Griz head basketball coach Wayne Tinkle.
"That's big man, that's real big," said Griz forward Kareem Jamar. "I'm happy for him and I hope he makes it, he's a great guy a hard worker and all he needs is an opportunity."
While Cherry knows the importance of having this opportunity, he says he cant take anything too serious because at the end of the day it's just basketball.
"It's going to be looked at like business, said Cherry. "But I'm also going to have fun while I'm doing it, I think that's the most important thing to remember is when doing this it's always a business but as long as you're having fun then I feel like that's when I'm at my best and when I'm playing my best basketball. That's how I approached the two NBA workouts that I had and I did really well and I plan on approaching the NBA Summer League the same way."
The New Orleans Pelicans will play Friday night against the Knicks on NBA TV.