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Green, who led the nation in scoring as a senior point guard this year, is the first Hokie taken since Deron Washington was picked by Detroit in 2008.
The Roanoke Times | File January
Virginia Tech guard Erick Green dishes the ball to a teammate during a game against Wake Forest in Blacksburg on Jan. 19.
UNLV's Anthony Bennett waves after being selected first overall by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA draft on Thursday in New York.
Alex Len, of Ukraine, gestures after being selected by the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the NBA draft Thursday in New York.
Friday, June 28, 2013
The Utah Jazz took Erick Green in the second round of the NBA draft Thursday night and then traded him to the Denver Nuggets.
Denver sent Rudy Gobert, its first-round pick, to the Jazz for Green and cash.
Green was chosen with the No. 46 overall pick in the 60-player, two-round draft. Thirty players were taken in the first round.
Green became the first Hokie taken since Deron Washington was picked by Detroit with the penultimate pick of the 2008 draft.
Green led the nation in scoring as a senior point guard this year, earning ACC player of the year and third-team All-America honors. He averaged 25 points and 3.8 assists.
As for the top of the draft, Anthony Bennett became the first Canadian to be the No. 1 overall pick and Nerlens Noel tumbled out of the top five and right into a trade,
Considered one of the favorites to be taken first, Noel instead fell to No. 6, where the New Orleans Pelicans took him and then dealt his rights to the Philadelphia 76ers for All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday and a second-round pick, according to a person familiar with the details. New Orleans also sent the 76ers a protected 2014 first-round pick.
The Cleveland Cavaliers started things by passing on centers Noel and Alex Len in favor of Bennett, a UNLV freshman forward who has starred for Canada’s junior national teams and was the Mountain West Conference freshman of the year.
There was suspense right until the end, either because the Cavs were unsure who they wanted or were trying to trade the pick. Most predictions had them taking one of the big men, with Noel largely considered the favorite for the No. 1 choice even after a torn ACL that ended his lone season at Kentucky in February.
“I’m just as surprised as everybody else,” Bennett said at Barclays Center in New York, where the draft was held.
Bennett, Noel and Len are all coming off injuries and couldn’t even work out for teams, but the Cavs decided Bennett’s shoulder surgery wasn’t enough cause for concern.
Orlando passed on both of the big men, too, going with Indiana swingman Victor Oladipo with the No. 2 pick. Washington took Otto Porter Jr. with the third pick, keeping the Georgetown star local.
“We’re going to do damage next year,” Porter said. “I already know what they bring to the table. All I do is plug myself in there, and it’s going to be fun.”
Indiana’s Cody Zeller went two places after Oladipo, to the Charlotte Bobcats.
The 7-foot-1 Len, who played for Maryland, went to Phoenix at No. 5. Len walked up to meet commissioner David Stern and collect his orange Suns hat, then sat down near the stage to put on the walking boot he needs for the stress fracture of his left ankle that was discovered after Maryland’s season.
“Let’s face it, how many times has the Phoenix Suns organization had a 7-1 guy with that type of skill?” Suns coach Jeff Hornacek said.
Noel finally went to New Orleans with the next pick.
“I thought everything was in the air, so I wasn’t thinking I was the No. 1 pick,” Noel said.
Kansas guard Ben McLemore, another player who was considered a potential top-three pick, also dropped, going seventh to Sacramento.
The Minnesota Timberwolves traded national college player of the year Trey Burke to Utah after taking the Michigan point guard at No. 9 overall. In return, Minnesota got the 14th and 21st overall picks — UCLA guard Shabazz Muhammad and Louisville’s Gorgui Deing.
The Dallas Mavericks selected Gonzaga center Kelly Olynyk with the 13th overall pick and traded him to the Boston Celtics for Brazilian Lucas Nogueira, who was taken by Boston at No. 16. Dallas also got a pair of future second-rounders in the deal.
Dallas then traded Nogueira along with Jared Cunningham to Atlanta for University of Miami point guard Shane Larkin, who was taken by the Hawks at No. 18. The Hawks also got a second-round pick.
Brooklyn took Duke forward Mason Plumlee at No. 22.
The draft was just a footnote for the Nets. Brooklyn was trying to make a huge trade with Boston. According to a person familiar with the situation, the Nets were attempting to acquire veterans Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry for a package of future draft picks and players that includes Kris Humphries.
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