From Waiter to G-League for Orris

From Waiter to G-League for Orris

South Dakota wasn’t a place Michael Orris expected his basketball journey to take him, yet he couldn’t pick a better place for it to continue.

“I wept. Playing in front of those guys, seeing them all here, it means the world to me.” Orris says.

Orris came to South Dakota State last year as a graduate transfer after stints at Kansas State and Northern Illinois, holding on to the dream of playing professional basketball, one that he’d shared with his younger brother Billy, who tragically passed away in a motorcycle accident in 2015.

His game winner in the Summit League Tournament against rival USD was the highlight of a season that saw Michael help lead the Jacks back to the NCAA Tournament.

“It was a redemption year for me to keep going and prove to myself and prove to everybody that I belong.” Michael says.

After college Orris played pro ball briefly in Iceland.

“My dream is always to play in the NBA, not to play overseas. And the G-League is the next step. So I was like, I’ll go the starving artist route! Like the actor in Hollywood that serves and waits tables but still waits for his dream.” Orris says.

Making it ironic that, after going undrafted and working out in between his job as a waiter in Indianapolis, Michael got a from the team in Hollywood, the Los Angeles Clippers.

“Did a double shift on Friday, Saturday I get a phone call and today I’m here playing!” The Agua Caliente Guard says.

Debuting for the Clippers G-League affiliate, with his extended SDSU family watching and his brother in his heart….

“I hope he’s jumping for joy, because this is a dream of his too and I wish I could share this moment with him, I wish he could be here but I know he’s proud of me. And I finally, I didn’t make it yet, but I’m making the right steps…”

….The latest chapter in Michael’s remarkable basketball journey is just beginning.

Zach Borg, KDLT Sports.

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