Tonight has been the traditional NBA Draft at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The opportunity for the thirty teams to select the best young players in the world. Focus on the highlights of the night.
A top 3 no surprise
If the identity of the first three young players selected had already been known for several weeks, the order remained unclear until the last minute. Long sloping to be No. 1, inside Jabari Smith Jr. (Auburn) finally fell to third place, against the Houston Rockets who inherit, therefore, a long, versatile physical player with a full offensive panoply.
It is the Italian international, Paolo Banchero (Duke) who saw Commissioner Adam Silver call his name in the first election of the vintage. He joins the Orlando Magic which reinforces his racket with a smart and strong end with interesting potential. With the second option, the Oklahoma City Thunder have set their sights on the long-awaited enigma: the slender giant Chet Holmgren (Gonzaga) who represents the archetype of the modern pivot, intelligent and endowed with real offensive qualities despite some measures as amazing as they are impressive. (2m15, 86kg).
The Kings surprise, the Pistons celebrate
The election of the Kings was like the first domino as doubts hovered around the Sacramento project with this 4th option. Contrary to the predictions of NCAA (college championship) specialists, the California franchise has decided to select 22-year-old Keegan Murray (Iowa) instead of promising winger Jaden Ivey (Purdue). The latter eventually fell into the hands of the Detroit Pistons who offered Cade Cunningham, first choice in the 2021 Draft, a golden teammate on the back court.
The Knicks at the heart of the movement
The most important craft of the evening took place in the middle of the first round. The Charlotte Hornets, New York Knicks and Detroit Pistons have agreed a triangle exchange between Kemba Walker (NYK) flying to Michigan, accompanied by Jalen Duren (Memphis), a young pivot selected in 13th place. Several future draft elections are also involved in the deal. The move allows the New York franchise to increase its financial flexibility in view of free agency this summer, while the Pistons and Hornets embark on a new rookie and election for the future, respectively.
The French selected for the 2022 Draft
Four Frenchmen were expected in the Draft this year and they will all land in the NBA next season. Not in vain, Ousmane Dieng (New Zealand) was the first tricolor selected last night. Chosen by the Knicks in 11th place, he was immediately transferred to OKC, which offers several future options for the coming vintages. A test of the trust placed in him by the Thunder. He thus joins the French Théo Maledon and Jaylen Hoard.
Pivot Moussa Diabaté (Michigan) has had to wait until the 43rd place to hear his name spoken at the Barclays Center microphone. He arrives at the Los Angeles Clippers of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Author of a great season at Betclic Elite, Ismael Kamagate (Paris Basketball) will be able to continue his development alongside Nikola Jokic in the Denver Nuggets, where he was selected in the 46th position. Dieng’s teammate in Auckland, Hugo Besson (New Zealand) joins European star Giannis Antetokounmpoo at the Milwaukee Bucks, through selection 58.
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