The NBA Draft 2000
By Steve Goldman, staff writer
Sunday, July 2, 2000
1. Kenyon Martin, PF, New Jersey Nets- Generally regarded as the best player available in the draft despite suffering a fractured fibula just before the NCAA tournament. This 6-9, 230-pound athlete showed he could do it all with the University of Cincinnati, including the ability to score, rebound, play defense and block shots. In fact he had 107 blocks in each of the last 2 years. Doesn’t possess a great outside shot, but "Obviously, it was a tough decision," president Rod Thorn said. "There were a lot of outstanding players. But when you really looked at it and studied it we're looking at a young man who got better every year culminated by his being named player of the year this year. We're talking about a young man who could step in and play tomorrow. We're talking about a young man who's career has just started. He has not nearly peaked. Our feeling was that he was the right pick for us."
2. Stromile Swift, PF, Vancouver Grizzlies- Came out after his sophomore year at LSU. One of the nation’s leaders this year in field goal percentage (60.8) and blocks (2.8). Has the inside moves and inside shooting ability, and can dominate a game. Needs to work on his free throws. 6-9, 225. "I believe I can make an impact if I work hard and the coaches and players work with me," Swift said.
3. Darius Miles, SF, Los Angeles Clippers- The highest draftee ever to come right out of high school. Tremendous athlete with all-around skills, and seems to have an aptitude for the game. 6-9, 217. From East St. Louis (IL) High School. "He has a great upside," GM Elgin Baylor said. "I just can visualize him playing with Lamar (Odom) for years to come."
4. Marcus Fizer, PF, Chicago Bulls- Elected to turn pro after his junior campaign at Iowa State. Averaged 18.9 points in his three years, with a 22.8 clip as a junior. Defense is where he excels the most, although he upped his shooting percentage from 45.0 to 58.2 in his last year. His 6-8, 250 frame helped him muscle in a lot of his points, but he also seems to understand the nuances of offense. Pretty good rebounder. We really do think he can play small forward," coach Tim Floyd said. "We think he gives us versatility at either the small forward or power forward, and we viewed Marcus as one of the few players in this draft who would require double-teams."
5. Mike Miller, SF, Orlando Magic- Orlando continued the string of forwards by taking this Florida U. sophomore. At 6-8, 218, he projects at the three-spot. Can pop it from the outside, but can also score on the drive. Good defender. His driving shot enabled the Gators to squeak by Butler in the first round of the 2000 NCAA tournament, and the team proceeded to advance all the way to the final game. "I`m really excited," coach Doc Rivers said. "We feel Mike Miller is the best player available with that pick. He can play the two [shooting guard]. He can play the three [small forward]. He`s a great shooter, and in this league, shooting is a premium."
6. DerMarr Johnson, SF, Atlanta Hawks- Projected as a small forward despite his 6-9 stature. Played just one season at Cincinnati, where he averaged 12.6 points. Athletic player who can handle the ball, shoot, drive and create his own shots. Needs experience. He's very young," coach Lon Kruger said. "He's very thin, so DerMarr's got a lot of work ahead of him. But we loved his workouts. We had him in twice and we really liked what we saw. "He has a lot in his favor. Great athleticism. He was well-coached at Cincinnati by Bob Huggins. He's versatile. He's athletic. He can shoot the ball with great range."
7. Chris Mihm, C, Cleveland Cavaliers (from Chicago)- The first center taken, he was generally regarded as the best available at the position. Fine all-around player. Very good offensively; in fact his ability to pull up and hit the jumper has caused the mistaken impression that he is a soft player. In actuality he has twice ranked among the top 10 players in rebounding and can play defense and block shots. Should get every opportunity to start, even if Zydrunas Ilgauskas makes a full recovery. Came out as a junior from the U. of Texas. 7-0, 262. "Even having Z, we needed to be bigger and tougher up front," GM Jim Paxson said.
8. Jamal Crawford, SG, Chicago Bulls (from Cleveland)- Led Michigan in scoring (16.6) in 1999-2000 despite the fact he was a freshman. Missed 12 games because of a suspension. Tall, slender (6-6, 190) frame. Fine ballhandler who raised his stock with an excellent showing at the Chicago camp. "We looked at Jamal Crawford, who easily could have been taken with the fourth pick, we liked him that much," Floyd said. "He's a guy we think can play the point guard spot for us. He has the versatility to play either [guard] spot.
9. Joel Przybilla, C, Milwaukee Bucks (from Houston)- Quit the Minnesota team and announced his decision to turn pro second-hand, after being declared academically ineligible. Excellent defensive player and shot-blocker who needs to work on offensive skills. Terrible foul shooter. Maturity a question. 7-1, 260. "Joel obviously is a very young player, and we're going to have to work pretty hard with him, but we really feel good about his future,'' GM Ernie Grunfeld said. "I think we may have a center here for the next 10, 12 years.''
10. Keyon Dooling, PG, Los Angeles Clippers (from Orlando)- Has all the tools for a point guard, but needs some more work. Good shooter, capable defender but needs work in that area. Came out as a sophomore from Missouri. "I've played point guard all of my life, it's something I know how to do. . . . I'm looking to coming out to L.A. and trying to turn things around," Dooling said.
11. Jerome Moiso, C, Boston Celtics- A native of Paris and also lived in Guadalupe. Played in France and then at Milford (CT) Academy before attending UCLA. Hence he comes out as a sophomore despite the fact he is 22 years old. Moves very well, especially for his size (6-11, 225). Good shooter and scorer who can block shots and play defense. Small for an NBA center. "We haven't really gotten in depth with him," GM Chris Wallace said. "The only issue with him is how long it's going to take him to gain strength. He's a quality person in addition to being an outstanding player/prospect. He's got a background that's unique and intriguing and also provides him a little different perspective than many of the American players you see just coming through the college ranks."
12. Etan Thomas, PF, Dallas Mavericks- The seventh-leading shot-blocker in NCAA history, he is a much better defensive player than offensive. Needs to work on a medium-range shot. Free throws improved this year, but he still finished at less than 68 percent. Regularly had a shooting percentage of better than 60 percent from the floor, but largely because he didn’t chance a lot of shots that weren’t easy. 6-9, 256 From Syracuse, where he was named the Big East Defensive player of the year. "What I bring to the table is very hard work, and a very coachable player," Thomas said. "I can grab some rebounds, block some shots. What I bring to the table is a hard worker, someone who's going to go in and work hard every night. "
13. Courtney Alexander, SG, Dallas Mavericks (from Orlando)- Put up 24.8 points per game as a senior at Fresno State. Excellent in the open floor. Good but inconsistent shooter. "I think my biggest asset is my ability to score," Alexander said. "And I'm beginning to think I could be a heck of a defensive player if I put my mind to it. I just think my overall ability to score has to be my biggest asset."
14. Mateen Cleaves, PG, Detroit Pistons- Led Michigan State to the national championship as a senior, and showed tremendous heart in doing so, returning from an injury in the second half. Directing the offense and passing skills are plusses, but needs to work on his shooting. "I like his toughness," assistant coach George Irvine said. "Two things I like about him. One, he pushes the ball up the floor and gets it ahead to teammates, and two, I like his tenacity on defense. Despite what these guys are saying about him on television I like his tenacity on defense. I liken him to Eric Snow, who I think is one of the best defensive point guards in the league."
15. Jason Collier, C, Houston Rockets (from Milwaukee)- Transferred from Indiana to Georgia Tech after one-plus seasons. 7-0, 250. Averaged about 17 points in each of his last two seasons. Good outside shooter. Grabbed 9.2 rebounds per game as a senior.
16. Hidayet Turkoglu, SF, Sacramento Kings- Has played on the Turkish national team. Good athlete who has fine one-on-one moves. 21 years old. 6-8, 202. "It was a very extensive process," coach Rick Adelman said. "But we did enough talking about it and I feel comfortable with it. I wish there would have been a 6-11 shot-blocker there that defended the heck out of people around the basket or somebody like that. But I didn't see him. "I kept looking, but I didn't see him."
17. Desmond Mason, SG, Seattle Supersonics- Averaged 18 points as a senior at Oklahoma State. Very athletic player who can play defense. Decent mid-range shooter, but can stand some improvement there. Is at his best on offense when the game is on the move.
18. Quentin Richardson, SG, Los Angeles Clippers- Averaged about 18 points per game in his two years at Depaul before turning pro. Hard-nosed player who is a good shooter but needs work on his ballhandling. Originally thought of as a lottery pick, but his stock dropped during the season. Richardson and Miles have a head start on familiarizing with the players, as they have roomed with each other the last couple months. "Quentin was high on our list," Baylor said. "I'm glad that [Richardson is friends with Miles], but he was one of the players we had right there, who we were looking to take. I see him as a [shooting guard] but he has the body to play some three also. I thought he would go sooner.
19. Jamaal Magloire, PF, Charlotte Hornets- Could be a reach at this point, and not much of a fantasy prospect anyway. The best area of his game is his defense, where he was an excellent shot-blocker at Kentucky. Averaged 13.2 points and 9.1 rebounds as a senior. 6-10, 260. Though he played center in college, he is trying to make the transition to power forward in the NBA. "I've worked tremendously hard at it," he said. "I'm a little small to be a center, even though I can muscle my way in and tie people up, so I've been trying to develop as a forward."
20. Craig Claxton, PG, Philadelphia 76ers- Nicknamed "Speedy," he is obviously fast as well as quick. Averaged 22.8 points and 6.0 assists as a senior at Hofstra. Small (5-10, 180) stature is a concern. "He was the best player (available), definitely," coach Larry Brown said. "There were a couple of kids we thought would be there that we felt would have been good for our team. When they were gone, we decided to go with picking the best player. He was definitely the best player."
21. Morris Peterson, SG-SF, Toronto Raptors- Averaged 16.8 points as a senior for the national champion Michigan State Spartans. Very good shooter and very quick athlete. Needs work on passing and ballhandling. "We not only got the best player available at that position, which is what we stated we'd do if the point guard we liked wasn't there, but it fills a need," director of basketball operations Bob Zuffelato said. "Whether Tracy [McGrady, a free agent as of today] returns or not, we needed a backup [wing] player."
22. Donnell Harvey, SF, Dallas Mavericks (from New York)- Played one year at NCAA runner-up Florida after being one of the most sought-after high school athletes in the country. Averaged 10.1 points while shooting more than 50%. Very athletic, and good on the defensive side of the floor. Needs fine-tuning, and work on his free throws. 6-8, 215. "I feel that everyone who entered the draft is not ready to play in the league," Harvey said. "It doesn't matter your age, or your experience, you just need to work hard to make it. "
"I think this will go down in the history of the Mavericks as one of my finest drafts in a long time," coach Don Nelson said. "It certainly was my most exciting draft. I'm so happy to have everyone here together, and thanks to Mark's plan the product came together. And we're happy to have everyone here together."
23. DeShawn Stevenson, SG, Utah Jazz- Comes out of Washington Union High School (CA) because there were doubts about his academic eligibility at Kansas. Very athletic but extremely rough, and is a project. 6-5, 210.
24. Dalibor Bagaric, C, Chicago Bulls- 7-0, 255-pound athlete from Croatia. Defense and rebounding are his biggest strengths, but he does have an outside touch. 20 years old. "He certainly is in the project stage," GM Jerry Krause said. "We think he has some ability."
25. Iakovos Tsakalidis, C, Phoenix Suns- Born in Georgia (of the former USSR) and also has citizenship in Greece. Has been playing in Greece, where he has used his 7-2, 282 frame to his advantage. Fine defensive player and good offensively in the low post, but needs to work on other offensive aspects. A concern is his contract status in Greece. His team, AEK, intends to keep him, but the Suns and Tsakalidis both believe he is free to play for the Suns now. He is 21 years old. "We will do everything we can to get him here," President Bryan Colangelo said. "There are some openings from an American legal perspective. And even the Ministry of Sport over there says there may be some openings."
26. Mamadou N’Ddiaye, C, Denver Nuggets- Excellent defensive player and shot blocker, but could improve a lot on offense. Has potential there, but that is mostly long-term. Not a good free-throw shooter. Born in Senegal and played at Auburn. 7-0, 250.
27. Primoz Brezec,C, Indiana Pacers- 6-11, 243-pound athlete from Slovenia. Played last year for Olympija, Ljubljana, where he played backup on a powerful squad. Averaged 4.8 points and 1.7 boards in 9 minutes while hitting 40 of 52 field goal attempts (76.9%). Will turn 21 in October.
28. Erick Barkley, G, Portland Trailblazers- Comes out after his soph campaign at St. John’s, although he is 22. Averaged 16 ppg last year despite hitting only about 40% of his shots. Does have good skills for the point, and can play defense. 6-1, 185. Barkley will serve as insurance should the Trailblazers not re-sign free agent Greg Anthony. "I can play defense 94 feet, I can get the team involved a lot, I can knock down the open jump shot, and I'm good off the dribble," Barkley said by telephone after he was drafted. "Hopefully, I can bring some leadership."
29. Mark Madsen, F, Los Angeles Lakers- Comes from Stanford, where he shot an excellent 58.7% over his career. Not a good outside shooter or foul shooter, however. Excellent rebounder who gives his all every time out. At 6-9, 240, could be a misfit at either forward spot, but may replace A.C. Green at power forward, as Green was released on draft night. "The one thing that I will impress upon you, this might be the toughest guy in the whole draft," GM Jerry West said. "He knows how to defend, likes to throw his body around, so we probably needed a player like that. . . . There were some other people we liked a lot. But I think this more fits our need--it kind of addresses the A.C. Green situation."
30. Marko Jaric, SF, Los Angeles Clippers- 21-year-old who played with Fortitudo, Italy. Has potential to be a good scorer. Averaged 9.9 points in 1999-00 but shot better than 57% of his two-pointers in each of his two years there. Played in Greece previously. 6-7, 210.
31. Dan Langhi, PF, Houston Rockets (from Dallas)- Averaged 22.1 points per game as a senior at Vanderbilt. Very good shooter and excellent from the free-throw line. A concern is whether his 6-11, 220-pound body can hold up against NBA big men.
32. A.J. Guyton, PG, Chicago Bulls- Played mostly off-guard at Indiana, but his chance for success in the pros is at the point. He shows capability there, but does not seem to have the natural skills, and will need a lot of work. Scored in double digits all four years, capping it with a 19.7 ppg campaign.
33. Jake Voskuhl, C, Chicago Bulls- Second all-time at Connecticut in games played and blocked shots (193). Never averaged in double digits, but shot 56.5%, 51.2% and 57.1% in his last three years. Sub-70% free-throw shooter. 6.4 boards per game as a senior. 6-11, 245.
34. Khalid El-Amin, PG, Chicago Bulls- Voskuhl¹s teammate at Connecticut, where it won the NCAA title in 1999. At 5-10, 200, size is a concern. So is speed and defense. Strong point is scoring; he averaged 16.0 points in his junior year, after which he came out. Shot 89.2 percent from the line last year.
35. Mike Smith, SF, Washington Wizards- His stock rose when he won the MVP of the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament. A bit slender at 6-8, 195. Averaged 19.3 ppg in his two years at Louisiana-Monroe. Pulled down 9.4 boards as a senior. Needs to continue to show that he can perform against top-level competition.
36. Soumaila Samake, C, New Jersey Nets- Comes from West Africa and played in Slovenia before spending a year with Cincinnati of the IBL. Excels at defense and shot-blocking, but has the potential to score some points. Averaged 9.7 ppg and 7.6 rpg with Cincinnati. 7-2, 230.
37. Eddie House, PG, Miami Heat- A concern is whether he is a fit at either guard spot. Can shoot from the outside. Averaged 18.9 points as a junior and 23.0 as a senior at Arizona State. Excellent free throw shooter. 6-1, 180.
38. Eduardo Najera, PF, Dallas Mavericks (from Houston): 6-8, 235-pound athlete who is not the most skilled competitor but is a fierce one. Averaged 18.4 points and 9.2 rebounds as a senior for Oklahoma. Shot less than 70% from the line all four years. Native of Mexico. Will turn 24 on July 11.
39. Lavor Postell, SG, New York Knicks- Played small forward at St. John¹s but will switch to shooting guard. Has good all-around skills. Averaged 14.3 ppg as a senior. 6-6, 210.
40. Hanno Mottola, SF, Atlanta Hawks- From Finland, but played collegiate ball with Utah. At 6-10, 245, could be a power forward too. Might have gone higher had he not suffered a torn MCL at the beginning of the year. Later incurred thumb and elbow injuries. Can score with the shot or on the drive. Excellent free throw shooter. Shot 50% from the floor over his career and averaged 17.0 points as a senior.
41. Chris Carrawell, SG, San Antonio Spurs- Good medium-range shooter who can create his own shot, but doesn¹t have great range or driving ability. Stepped up in his senior year at Duke to average 16.9 ppg while grabbing 6.1 rpg. Raised his free-throw rate by 20 percent to 77.8. 6-6, 220.
42. Olumide Oyedeji, PF, Seattle Supersonics- 19-year old project from Nigeria who played in Germany for two years. Also played for Russia. A very good defensive player who is improving his offensive game. Averaged 12.4 ppg, 15.4 rpg and shot 55.9 percent from the floor last year. Terrible free-thrown shooter. 6-10, 240.
43. Michael Redd, SG, Atlanta Hawks- Came out after a disappointing junior year at Ohio State. One more year there probably would have helped. Put in 21.9 ppg as a freshman, but that dipped by more than two points each of the other two seasons. Good shooter who appears to be a liability on defense. 6.5 rpg as a senior. 6-6, 215.
44. Brian Cardinal, SF, Detroit Pistons- Does many things pretty well, but ties it all together with a lot of desire. A double-digit scorer all four years at Purdue, topped by a 13.9 ppg senior campaign, but his shooting percentage dipped to 41.1. 6-8, 245.
45. Jabari Smith, C, Sacramento Kings- 6-11, 250 athlete from LSU. Scored at a 12.6 ppg clip in his two years there. Limited offensive skills and poor foul shooter. Rebounding average dipped from 9.7 to 6.1. Did not impress at the Chicago camp. Not a good fantasy prospect.
46. DeeAndre Hulett, SG, Toronto Raptors- 19-year-old who played one year for the College of the Sequoias and then one for Las Vegas of the IBL. Averaged 8.4 points in 20.2 minutes while shooting 50.1 percent. Needs work on foul shooting. 6-8, 205.
47. Josip Sesar, SG, Boston Celtics (from Seattle)- Played in Croatia for four years. Good outside shooter who nailed 64.8 percent of his two-point shots and 41.2 of his three-pointers. 6-6.
48. Mark Karcher, SG, Philadelphia 76ers- Could have benefited by staying at Temple for more than two years, but was forced to declare to support a sick child. Led the Owls in scoring twice, and put in 15.8 ppg last year. Good outside shooter who nailed 82 three-pointers, but overall shooting percentage was poor both years. Not a good free-throw shooter. Good defensive player.
49. Jason Hart, PG, Milwaukee Bucks- 6-3, 180-pound point guard who has good all-around skills for the position. Shot well from three-point range but had a low percentage otherwise. 11.4 ppg in his career at Syracuse, 6.5 assists per game as a senior.
50. Kaniel Dickens, F, Utah Jazz- Came out after his junior year at Idaho, where he averaged 12.1 ppg and 6.6 rpg last year. 6-8, 235.
51. Igor Rakocevic, G, Minnesota Timberwolves- Yugoslavian athlete. 15.8 ppg in 1999-00, hitting 60.3 percent of his two-pointers. Great jumper who can dunk despite 6-2 height. 175 pounds. Good at driving with the ball. 22 years old.
52. Ernest Brown, C, Miami Heat- Comes out early after excelling for Mesa Community College and Indian Hills Community College. Has a reputation of attitude problems. Impressed in Chicago camp before incurring an injury.
Excellent shot blocker. 7-0, 255.
53. Dan McClintock, C, Denver Nuggets- Played at Northern Arizona, where he showed he can score and block shots, but was inconsistent. 15.6 ppg as a senior. 7-0, 255.
54. Cory Hightower,G, Los Angeles Lakers (from San Antonio)- Averaged 22.4 ppg, 5.8 rpg and 4.4 apg as a sophomore at Indian Hills CC. 6-8, 200.
55. Chris Porter, SF, Golden State Warriors- Had a disappointing senior year at Auburn, capped by a suspension for dealing with an agent. Averaged 15.3 ppg in his two years at the school and 7.3 rpg as a senior. Not a long shooter, but does enough things well enough to earn a selection in the draft.
56. Jacquay Walls, G, Indiana Pacers- Played at Colorado, where he averaged 17.0 points and 3.5 assists as a senior. Excellent outside shooter. 6-3, 170.
57. Scoonie Penn, PG, Atlanta Hawks- Very good all-around skills and excellent shooter and clutch player. 5-10, 185-pound size is a concern. Averaged 16.3 points and 4.3 assists in his two years at Ohio State after transferring from Boston College.
58. Pete Mickeal, SF, New York Knicks (from Dallas)- Not very quick, which is a concern. Has some skills, but does not really excel at anything. Played 2 years at Cincinnati after coming out of Indian Hills CC. 14.2 ppg, 54.5% shooting, 6.8 rpg in his career at Cincinnati. 6-5, 230.