Two Chicago area college players hope to make their mark next month at the NBA draft combine
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CHICAGO (CBS) — Eighty-three NBA hopefuls showing up to show out for league scouts and executives in the hope they can improve their stock for next month’s 60-player draft.

CBS 2’s Matt Zahn has more on a couple of hoopers boomeranging back in town, set on disproving the old adage that you can’t go home again.

The top NBA draft prospects are putting their talents on display at Wintrust Arena. 

It’s a homecoming for a pair of potential first round picks: Ohio State junior big man E.J. Liddel who went to Belleville West, and Rolling Meadows alum Max Christie who left Michigan State after just one year. The whole combine process has been interesting for both of them.

“Even though teams are interviewing me, it’s almost like I’m interviewing them as well, trying to learn. On the court, showing I can still shoot the ball. Wasn’t reflected this past year. I know that I can shoot. It’s sort of an easy task when I come into these workouts,” Christie said.

“They ask what people wouldn’t like about me off the court. I couldn’t give an answer. Then they asked a bad habit. I need to stop biting my nails. (Draft stock falling because you bite your nails?) I hope not, I hope that’s not the case,” Liddell said. 

Liddell and Christie each said that they had met with a number of teams, but neither of them with the Bulls yet, who hold the 18th pick. As for what it would mean to be drafted by their hometown team?

“It means Illinois fans would have to start liking me. It would be really awesome. Parents could come up to games,” Liddell said. 

“That’d be great. Just being around the family all the time,” Christie said.

E.J. Liddell had the best vertical leap of any player here which he says shows how explosive he can be, and Max Christie was among the fastest in the speed tests. Both hoping they’ve bolstered their draft stocks here. At the NBA Draft Combine.

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