Duke Center Brian Zoubek to "Cream" Competition
The 7-footer from Haddonfield will open a pastry shop next to Bread Board Plus on Haddon Ave.
Brian Zoubek likes cream puffs.
You got a problem with that? If you did, it's not likely you would tell him to his face.
For starters, you would likely have to stand on a ladder to do it. Zoubek is 7-foot-1 and weighs about 265 pounds. He was a standout at Duke and went out a winner, when the Blue Devils beat Butler for an NCAA basketball championship in 2010.
He was a local legend in Haddonfield before that as a leader of the Haddonfield Memorial High School basketball team and the New Jersey State Player of the Year in 2006.
A back injury prevented him from playing in the NBA, but Zoubek is eager to turn the page on the next chapter of his life.
"I want to prove myself in something other than sports," he said on a recent weekday night after being grilled by the Historic Preservation Commission during a hearing for a sign for his new business, Dream Puffz.
Zoubek wanted a sign that said "Heavenly Cream Puff Creations." But borough regulations limit signs to just three words. After a brief debate, the HPC approved his request after he agreed to take "Heavenly" off to adhere to the regulation.
It was just one more hurdle for Zoubek on the way to the next part of his life.
"I love to make cream puffs," he said. "I'm just a fat kid, at heart."
Looking long and lean, well coiffed and preppy cool, Zoubek looked anything but fat. He said he plans to open his bakery soon at 605 Haddon Ave., next to the Bread Board Plus restaurant. He said he won't actually make the cream puffs, but indicated the recipe was unique.
"I've loved cream puffs my whole life," he said. "When I was growing up, I used to get therm from another place in town."
Zoubek said he had another business venture with some buddies from Duke. It was a technology store in New York City. He left that business but still has a residence in New York. He said he would like to nail down the cream puff business in his hometown before taking it on the road to New York.
"I think it would work there," he said. "They don't have anything like this up there."