Coming off the Heat’s second NBA championship in a row the 2013 NBA Draft ushered in a host of surprises and interesting strategy plays from teams, throughout the draft which began last Thursday.
That said, area schools were represented notably, first with Indiana’s shooting guard Victor Oladipo, who was drafted second overall to the Orlando Magic. Oladipo has been a steady for the Hoosiers, so his top ten pick was of little surprise, all though many expected the guard to go just a few picks later. That said, he could prove to be the perfect decision for the rebuilding Magic.
The Hoosiers struck next in area schools, only two picks later when power forward Cody Zeller got the nod from the Charlotte Bobcats. Zeller has been the stand out power forward in the NCAA during his time with Indiana, and for a Bobcats team who are missing notable tenacity he’s a solid pickup.
Quite possibly the biggest shocker though came in the 6th round when the New Orleans Pelicans drafted Kentucky all-star Nerlens Noel, who was considered a lock for a number one pick in the draft. No doubt, his injury hurt this for NBA teams who must be cognizant of injury prone athletes.
That said, number six certainly isn’t bad by any means, simply surprising, more surprising though was the fact that the Pelicans immediately traded Noel to the Philadelphia 76ers.
The first pick for the National Champion Louisville Cardinals didn’t come until the 21st pick when the Utah Jazz selected all-star center Gorgui Dieng, the Jazz decided to trade the standout center though, following a deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Ironically, this could prove to be the best move for Dieng, as the T’Wolves have always focused on their “big men,” Dieng no doubt will fit their style of play well.
Meanwhile, in a confusing three team deal, Kentucky’s Archie Goodwin was selected by the Oklahoma City Thunder for their 29th pick, then Goodwin would be a Golden State Warrior, somehow currently he’s on the roster for the Phoenix Suns though.
Louisville struck next in the 56th pick, when Cards guard Peyton Siva put on the cap of the Detroit Pistons.
What will be the general outcome of these athletes when they reach the “big leagues” so to speak? It’s hard to tell, but it certainly gives area basketball fans some guys to watch.
Images courtesy of Zimbio , ESPN , Yahoo , NBA Draft.net , U of L Card Game, and Round Ball Daly