The Washington Times-Herald

Sports

June 26, 2009

Zeller picked for Chicago Bulls summer league team

By Mike Myers, Sports Writer — GREENCASTLE - Luke Zeller didn't get the call Thursday night informing that he had been drafted by an NBA team.

But his phone did ring on Friday, and now Zeller will get the chance to take the professional basketball "Bull" by the horns.

Zeller was informed by his agent Friday afternoon that he has been picked by the Chicago Bulls to play on their summer league team in the Las Vegas Summer League next month.

Speaking by phone Friday afternoon from DePauw University, where he was watching his brother, Washington Hatchet junior-to-be Cody Zeller in a tournament, Zeller was short on details, but knew he had to report to Chicago on July 9. Play in Las Vegas at the Thomas and Mack Center and the COX Pavilion begins on July 10 and continues through July 19. A total of 21 NBA teams will field squads at Las Vegas.

The former Notre Dame center said he was "ecstatic" when he received the good news from his agent today. In Vegas, Zeller will get the chance to show his skills for scouts from every NBA team. In addition, scouts from professional teams abroad will be looking for talent in Vegas, and being picked for the NBA Summer League carries plenty of weight overseas.

"I was incredibly excited to make a summer league team," said Zeller, who was invited for pre-draft workouts by the Bulls as well the Indiana Pacers and Milwaukee Bucks. He was also a part of three days of workouts in New Jersey for several NBA teams. "If I have to go overseas, to have the stamp on me as an NBA guy makes a huge difference."

Many of the players taken in Thursday's draft, including Chicago's two first round picks - power forwards James Johnson of Wake Forest (16th overall) and Taj Gibson of Southern Cal (26th overall) - are likely to play in Las Vegas, as well as free agents like Zeller and younger players already in the league. Zeller will be looking to parlay his play in the summer league into an invitation to an NBA training camp, the next step in his quest to reach the top rung of professional basketball.

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