NBA's Zeller Says Hedge Fund Taught 'Time Management'

Jul 9 2012 | 5:00am ET

Athletes who go into hedge funds frequently say that sports inculcate skills valuable on the trading floor. But one of basketball's newest professionals says the learning curve works in the other direction, as well.

Tyler Zeller, the 17th pick in last week's National Basketball Association draft, credits his internship at hedge fund Morgan Creek Capital Management for some of his hardwood success.

"I did it because I found it interesting and fascinating," Zeller told ESPN. "I think I got paid about $15 an hour. It really taught me time management. I worked from 8 a.m. to noon every day, did workouts in the afternoon, then had to do it all over again the next day. Getting up that early is almost unheard of for a college student."

Morgan Creek is based in Chapel Hill, N.C., which is also home to the University of North Carolina, where Zeller studied and played for the Tar Heels, including on the 2009 national championship team.

Zeller will play next season for the Cleveland Cavaliers, who acquired him from the team that drafted him in the first round, the Dallas Mavericks.

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