Eastern Washington star Venky Jois has undertaken his first NBA pre-draft workout and made a positive impression with the Sacramento Kings.
At the Kings workout, the 6'8 Jois was joined by guards Nick Faust (Long Beach State), Codi Miller-McIntyre (Wake Forest) and Anthony Beane (Southern Illinois), and center's Mamadou Ndiaye (UC Irvine) and Mike Tobey (Virginia).
Despite still in the midst of competing his studies in Cheney, Jois was able to somewhat surprise and impress the Kings front office with a solid performance.
"In general I don't think many people thought much of me coming in," shared Jois in speaking with The Pick and Roll immediately after completing his workout. "However I had a few different people come up to me after and say how impressed they were, giving me some good advice for the whole rookie year process."
Jois enthused that he believed he had done very well, including going a long way to dispel perceptions that he was not a great shooter from range.
"I shot the ball well from three," added Jois. "However I did my best in the one-on-one and three-on-three competitive components of the workout."
In a media interview after his workout, Jois also shared that he was impressed with the overall experience, the development personnel and the facilities that they were able to access at the Kings.
"It was awesome," expressed Jois. "Today was my first pre-draft workout. The guys here, the development crew, everyone's intensity was amazing."
While the workout was the first in what is likely to be many for the explosive forward, the Kings indicated to Jois that they would be using their second round draft pick to secure a player that they could develop and potentially bring in at a later stage.
"The assistant GM said in an interview that as far as their second round pick was to go, it would be based on potential, explained Jois. "They are not necessarily looking for that player to make an immediate impact, but in time and through development. So I think if I can show over the next month what I can be capable of anything can happen!"
Jois is a dynamic and versatile forward who does his best work in the paint at both ends and is a threat to record a double-double every game. Offensively he is a dunking machine, possessing a variety of post moves to be able to finish in the paint, while also being able to beat taller opponents off the dribble. Defensively, he is able to change and block shots. The Big Sky First-Team recipient averaged 16.4 points on a very efficient 67.9% from the field with 8.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.8 blocks per game in his senior year with the Eagles.
Jois already has a number of offers to return to Australia to play professionally in the NBL, however for now he is pursuing his NBA dream.