Once NBA lottery pick, Thabeet looks for return with Drive

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- Few players have dominated college basketball the way Hasheem Thabeet did during a stellar career at the University of Connecticut.

Now, the 7-foot-3 native of Tanzania just wants another shot in the NBA.

The second overall pick of the 2009 Draft is now one of the 17 players on the Grand Rapids Drive's inaugural roster. He's played with four NBA franchises and two D-League teams in his five-year pro career -- averaging 2.2 points and 2.7 rebounds in 10.5 minutes a game.

He's been labeled a "bust" by many people, but the 27-year-old is confident and focused on returning to the NBA.

"It is what it is," Thabeet says. "I really don't dwell on my past. The focus is on the guys that I'm with over here and the city of Grand Rapids. It's just a positive vibe for me to come into this situation and work."

Regular playing time in Grand Rapids is something Thabeet thinks can get him back to where he was in college.

"Just get the rhythm back. That's been the problem," he says. "Just to be out there as long as I can be and do what I do best. Just come out here to work hard and get back to where I belong."


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