Diallo playing for the Pelicans in 2017
|No. 13 – New Orleans Pelicans|
|Position||Power forward / Center|
|Born||September 13, 1996|
|Listed height||6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)|
|Listed weight||220 lb (100 kg)|
|High school||Our Savior New American School|
(Centereach, New York)
|NBA draft||2016 / Round: 2 / Pick: 33rd overall|
|Selected by the Los Angeles Clippers|
|2016–present||New Orleans Pelicans|
|2017||→Long Island Nets|
|Career highlights and awards|
Cheick Diallo (born September 13, 1996) is a Malian professional basketball player for the New Orleans Pelicans of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Diallo was a five-star recruit and was widely considered one of the top players in the Class of 2015. He was the MVP of the 2015 McDonald's All-American Boys Game. He played one season of college basketball for Kansas before declaring for the 2016 NBA draft, where he was selected with the 33rd overall pick by the Los Angeles Clippers.
Diallo was born and raised in Kayes, Mali. It took approximately 15 hours to drive from his hometown to Bamako, the country's capital city. He was the youngest in his family and had five brothers. Diallo moved to the United States in February 2012 in pursuit of a basketball career. He was not fluent in the English language at the time. He recalled the time, "It was so tough. I left my parents, my friends, my brothers, everything, just to come here. At first, I was thinking, I just want to go back. But one day I said, 'No, not yet. I want to stay and work hard here before I go back to Mali.'" Diallo began playing basketball in 2010.
High school career
Through its international program, Diallo began attending Our Savior New American School in Centereach, New York. He played with Chris Obekpa in his freshman season and, at first, was dominated by the fellow African big man. Diallo said, "I didn't know what I was doing. I couldn't make a point. [Obekpa] blocked me every time." In later seasons, he became more effective for his team and attracted attention through his shot-blocking, rebounding, and versatility. Diallo was invited to the NBPA Top 100 camp in 2013 and went on to become its first MVP from Africa.
Diallo missed the first five games of his freshman season with Kansas after the NCAA failed to clear him to play due to eligibility concerns. On November 25, 2015, he was cleared to play for the Jayhawks in their game against Loyola on December 1, after the NCAA ultimately ruled Diallo had received a limited amount of impermissible benefits. In his lone season at Kansas, Diallo averaged 3.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 7.5 minutes per game.
In May 2016, at the NBA Draft Combine, Diallo registered a 7-foot, 4½-inch wingspan and an 8-foot-11½ standing reach. On June 23, 2016, he was selected by the Los Angeles Clippers with the 33rd overall pick in 2016 NBA draft.
New Orleans Pelicans (2016–present)
On the evening of the draft, Diallo was traded to the New Orleans Pelicans. On July 22, 2016, he signed with the Pelicans after averaging 10.2 points, 9.4 rebounds and 2.2 blocks in five Summer League games. He made his NBA debut on October 29, 2016, recording one rebound and one block in six minutes off the bench in the Pelicans' 98–79 loss to the San Antonio Spurs. Diallo played in just two games for a total of seven minutes over the Pelicans' first 23 games of the season. On December 10, 2016, he played in just under 31 minutes off the bench and scored 19 points in the Pelicans' 133–105 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. He also recorded 10 rebounds and shot 8-of-15 from the field. On April 11, 2017, he scored 19 points in a 108–96 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. The following day, in the Pelicans' season finale, Diallo had 12 points and 16 rebound in a 103–100 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. During his rookie season, he had multiple assignments with the Austin Spurs, Long Island Nets and Greensboro Swarm of the NBA Development League, pursuant to the flexible assignment rule.
On March 9, 2018, Diallo scored a season-high 14 points in a 116–97 loss to the Washington Wizards. On March 18, 2018, he set a new season high with 17 points in a 108–89 win over the Boston Celtics.
NBA career statistics
|GP||Games played||GS||Games started||MPG||Minutes per game|
|FG%||Field goal percentage||3P%||3-point field goal percentage||FT%||Free throw percentage|
|RPG||Rebounds per game||APG||Assists per game||SPG||Steals per game|
|BPG||Blocks per game||PPG||Points per game||Bold||Career high|
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- Braziller, Zach (September 6, 2013). "From Mali to L.I., Diallo leaps to top tier of HS hoopers". NYPost.com. Retrieved April 20, 2015.
- O'Donnell, Ricky (August 5, 2015). "Star Kansas freshman Cheick Diallo yet to be cleared by the NCAA". SBNation.com. Retrieved August 5, 2015.
- "NCAA says Cheick Diallo can suit up for Kansas starting Tuesday". ESPN.com. November 26, 2015. Retrieved November 26, 2015.
- Dodd, Rustin (November 11, 2015). "Cheick Diallo's eligibility case at Kansas raises questions about NCAA's mission". KansasCity.com. Retrieved November 11, 2015.
- Borzello, Jeff (April 7, 2016). "Cheick Diallo to declare for NBA draft". ESPN.com. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
- Goodman, Jeff (May 14, 2016). "Cheick Diallo to keep name in NBA draft pool". ESPN.com. Retrieved May 14, 2016.
- Reid, John (June 23, 2016). "Pelicans acquire former Kansas power forward Cheick Diallo's draft rights in trade with Clippers". NOLA.com. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
- Eichenhofer, Jim (June 24, 2016). "Pelicans land Cheick Diallo in second-round trade with Clippers". NBA.com. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
- "Pelicans Sign 2016 Second Round Draft Pick Cheick Diallo". NBA.com. July 22, 2016. Retrieved July 22, 2016.
- "Pelicans vs. Spurs – Box Score". ESPN.com. October 29, 2016. Retrieved November 27, 2016.
- "Cheick Diallo 2016-17 Game Log". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved December 11, 2016.
- "Clippers score season-high 133 points in win vs. reeling Pelicans". ESPN.com. December 10, 2016. Retrieved December 11, 2016.
- "Metta scores 18 in possible farewell, Lakers top Pels 108-96". ESPN.com. April 11, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
- "Pelicans end the season with a 103-100 win over the Blazers". ESPN.com. April 12, 2017. Retrieved April 13, 2017.
- "2016-17 NBA Assignments". NBA.com. Retrieved January 11, 2017.
- "Without Davis, Pelicans' win streak ends at 10 vs Wizards". ESPN.com. March 9, 2018. Retrieved March 9, 2018.
- "Davis leads Pelicans past Celtics 108-89". ESPN.com. March 18, 2018. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
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