New York (AFP)
Cade Cunningham, a 19-year-old guard who played at Oklahoma State University last season, was selected by the Detroit Pistons with the first pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday.
Cunningham averaged 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.6 steals a college game after helping USA win the Basketball World Cup. under 19 ball 2019.
“It’s still crazy. Words can’t really explain emotions, ”Cunningham said. “I’m ready to see what I can do at the next level. “
Cunningham travels to “Motor City” creates a perfect nickname – Motor Cade – for a Pistons team that went 20-52 last season and won the NBA Draft Lottery on June 22 to claim the top pick.
The Houston Rockets, who had the worst NBA record at 17-55 last season, picked second and picked 19-year-old shooter Jalen Green of Team Ignite’s G-League prospects as the best homer. development of the NBA.
Green was the best choice to jump the US college scene, following the path of LaMelo Ball, who was ranked third overall last year after choosing to play in Australia.
Green averaged 17.9 points, 2.1 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game last season for Ignite.
The Cleveland Cavaliers used the third overall on Evan Mobley, a 7-foot forward who averaged 16.4 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game at the University of Southern California this season. last.
Toronto selected Florida State forward Scottie Barnes fourth and Orlando took custody Jalen Suggs fifth overall.
– Aussie Giddey à OKC –
Australian guard Josh Giddey, 18, was sixth overall in Oklahoma City. The son of two professional Australian players, Giddey averaged 10.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 7.6 assists per game for Adelaide of the Australian National Basketball League last season.
Jonathan Kuminga, an 18-year-old striker from the Democratic Republic of Congo, was ranked seventh overall by Golden State. He left Africa for the United States at the age of 13 and had not seen his parents since then until they came to see him in the draft.
“It was a difficult thing to do but it was something I had to do to make my parents proud,” Kuminga said. “I feel like it motivated me to be the best person I can be. “
Kuminga wants to be an example for African youth dreaming of an NBA career.
“It means a lot to African children that I have been able to do whatever I am able to do,” he said.
19-year-old German forward Franz Wagner of the University of Michigan went eighth to Orlando, where he will be a teammate of his older brother Mo.
“He just told me to enjoy every moment and have fun with it,” said younger brother Wagner.
© 2021 AFP