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    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Men's Basketball Facebook Page
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    D’Angelo Russell joined some elite company Thursday night. The evening also had unexpected outcomes for Terry Rozier and Montrezl Harrell.

    Russell, the Louisville native who is coming off a fabulous freshman season at Ohio State University, was the No. 2 overall selection (behind Kentucky’s Karl-Anthony Towns) in the NBA Draft. He joined Louisville legends Darrell Griffith, Wes Unseld and Charlie Tyra, all of whom were the second selections in previous drafts.

    Meanwhile, former University of Louisville stars Rozier and Harrell didn’t go in the position, or the order, that many mock drafts had projected. Rozier, the 6-foot-2 1/4 combo guard who many had figured for the end of the first round, was selected 16th overall by the Boston Celtics. Harrell, the 6-7 1/2 forward who had been projected to go in the latter half of the first round, surprisingly slipped to the second round, where the Houston Rockets picked him with the 32nd overall selection (the second pick of the that round).

    Russell, a 6-5 point guard who averaged 19.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and five assists per game last season for the Buckeyes, brought the first surprise of the draft after Towns was taken No. 1 by Minnesota. Most had expected the Los Angeles Lakers to take Duke center Jahlil Okafor, but instead they went with Russell. In L.A., Russell will play alongside Kobe Bryant and likely with a yet-to-be-signed free agent, possibly LaMarcus Aldridge, Kevin Love or DeAndre Jordan.

    Rozier’s selection was also a surprise considering that the Celtics already have young guards in Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart (Boston’s first-round pick last year) and sixth man Isaiah Thomas. Apparently, the upside of Rozier, who averaged 17.1 points, 5.6 rebounds and three assists in his breakout sophomore season with the Cardinals, was too much to pass up.

    “We are so excited and happy for Terry,” UofL coach Rick Pitino, famously a former Celtics coach as well, said in a press release. “He’s one of the hardest workers with the most professional attitude any coach could want. He’s just scratching this potential and will work his tail off for the Celtics. All of Card Nation is thrilled for him.”

    Harrell’s fall was more shocking considering that some figured he could go as early as No. 19. Houston, however, appears to be a good landing spot for Harrell. The Rockets, who selected Wisconsin forward Sam Dekker with their first-round pick, only have two power forwards on their roster - Kentucky product Terrence Jones and 7-footer Donatas Motiejunas. Harrell, who could give star center Dwight Howard a run for his money when it comes to power dunks, should immediately provide inside toughness to Houston’s second unit.

    “We’re all surprised that Montrezl slipped out of the first round, but it really doesn’t matter,” Pitino said. “He’ll get a contract from Houston. The most important thing is to be drafted by the right team with a chance to play. He certainly was drafted by the right team with a chance to play. Some players would have a chip on their shoulder to prove people wrong (about not being selected in the first round). Montrezl will have a boulder on his shoulder, and there’s not a doubt in my mind that he will.”

    Meanwhile led by Towns, Kentucky had four lottery picks and six selections overall. After Towns, Willie Cauley-Stein was selected sixth by Sacramento (where he’ll team with former Wildcat DeMarcus Cousins), Trey Lyles was taken 12th by Utah, Devin Booker went 13th to Phoenix (where he’ll join former Wildcats Brandon Knight, Eric Bledsoe and Archie Goodwin), which also took Andrew Harrison with the 44th pick (14th in the second round). Dakari Johnson rounded out the Kentucky contingent, going 48th overall to Oklahoma City.

    Photo courtesy of University of Louisville Men's Basketball Facebook page.

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