Cancer survivor Coby Karl hopeful for shot at NBA Print
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Tuesday, 26 June 2007 12:42
NBA Headline News

 SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -Coby Karl may have endeared himself to Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan and gotten himself in the doghouse at home.
Karl, the son of Nuggets coach George Karl, worked out for Sloan on Tuesday and noted how Utah's fundamental style reminded him of his father's teams in Seattle and Milwaukee.
``What Coach Sloan and my dad preach is play the right way and play hard and play tough. And play defense, but unfortunately my dad's team doesn't play defense, so you can't really say that right now,'' Karl said with a slight grin.
``But if you look at his history, his teams have played defense,'' Coby said.
The younger Karl is happy to be getting a look from NBA teams, just 2 1/2 months after having cancerous lymph nodes removed. It was his second bout with cancer in a little more than a year.
Karl had his thyroid removed in 2006 and chemotherapy after his junior season at Boise State. After his senior year, he had another operation to remove lymph nodes from his throat. He didn't have more chemotherapy but still had to get back into shape to participate in pre-draft workouts.
``All the cancer seems to be behind me right now and I'm just moving on from there,'' Karl said.
George Karl was treated for prostate cancer in 2005.
``They found it in time and it's a curable, treatable form of it and it's been taken care of,'' Coby Karl said of his illness. ``I think we've been very fortunate in terms of dealing with cancer.''
The elder Karl won't be drafting his son. The Nuggets traded away their picks.
The Jazz were the last of 11 NBA teams to take a look at Karl, who averaged 14.8 points and four assists as a senior at Boise State. He declared early for the 2006 draft, despite having just completed chemotherapy, but pulled out in time to keep his college eligibility.
He said teams seem interested, but he knows that only 60 players will be selected in the two rounds Thursday night.
``There's not a lot of decisiveness,'' he said. ``Whether that's because they don't know yet or if they're just trying to be nice, I don't know.''
Utah owns the 25th pick in the first round and No. 55 overall in the second round. Karl thinks he would be a good fit, but that's up to the Jazz.
``They're kind of old school - just do it the right way. That's the way I've been brought up and that's how I learned how to play,'' he said.
Walt Perrin, Jazz director of player personnel, said Karl can play either guard position. He performed well in his workout Tuesday, when Utah also looked at eight other prospects.
``He understands the NBA game. He's been around NBA players. He understands the lifestyle. He understands how hard it is to be in the NBA,'' Perrin said. ``He's got a leg up on most players coming out of college and coming from Europe.''
Karl is hoping to play in the NBA, regardless of what happens in the draft. He said he could have another chance to make an impression during the summer league and maybe get an invitation to training camp as a free agent.
He said the developmental league could be an option or he could look overseas. But he plans to keep playing - somewhere.
``It's just the starting point for a career,'' he said. ``It's not the end of your life if you don't get drafted.''
 

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