Fab Melo, a former star center for Syracuse and first round pick by the Boston Celtics, has passed away, according to reports.
According to multiple reports out of his native Brazil, Melo passed away at just 26 years old. SNY’s Adam Zagoria confirmed the news with a team source.
Melo was a former five-star recruit, and after a rough freshman season, a standout center for the Orange in 2011-12. With Melo defending the rim, that Syracuse team ran out to 34-3 record and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Melo averaged 7.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 2.9 blocks per game in 30 appearances for the Orange, but served multiple suspensions during the season, and missed Syracuse’s NCAA Tournament run. The team lost to Ohio State in the Elite Eight.
Melo was the 22nd overall pick by the Celtics that year, but only appeared in six NBA games. He spent time with the Maine Red Claws and Texas Legends of the D-League before heading back to Brazil to continue his professional career. He most recently played with club Brasília.