Why wasn’t Jacob Pullen selected in Thursday night’s NBA draft?
I watched a lot of college basketball this season, and Pullen was really good. Remember? He became Kansas State’s all-time leading scorer. He was the key player in the Wildcats’ late-season push to the NCAA Tournament, and almost master-minded a second-round upset of Wisconsin.
Pullen was at his very best in a K-State win over Kansas. Yes, he had some rough spots, both on and off the court. But if Pullen was a notch behind first-round guard choices like Kyrie Irvin, Kemba Walker, Jimmer Fredette and Brandon Knight, it was just a notch.
So what am I missing?
Is it that Pullen isn’t a true point guard? And that he’s not big enough to be an NBA shooting guard? Is that what I’m missing?
I really thought Pullen would be one of the 60 players chosen Thursday and I refuse to believe 60 better players went ahead of him. Pullen is a basketball player. And a winner. If there’s a player most instrumental in the K-State good fortunes of the past five years, it’s Pullen. It’s not Michael Beasley, who was in Manhattan for only one season.
It’s a shame Pullen wasn’t chosen. Here’s hoping he eventually gets a chance to prove himself.
Some other NBA draft observations:
- Isn’t it strange, and great, that the Morris twins, Markieff and Marcus, went back-to-back in the first round; Markieff at No. 13 to Phoenix and Marcus at No. 14 to Houston? And isn’t it strange to think of Markieff now getting top billing, since he was taken ahead of his brother, after all?
- Cleveland, as expected, took Duke point guard Kyrie Irving with the No. 1 pick. Then, in a bit of surprise, the Cavs went with Texas center Tristan Thompson at No. 4. I’m not convinced Cleveland had a bang-up night. I’m not convinced either of these players is going to turn out to be as good as the Cavs need them to be.
- I love Detroit’s draft. Getting Kentucky point guard Brandon Knight at No. 8 was good, although I wonder how tempted the Pistons were to take Kemba Walker, who went with the next pick to Charlotte. The Pistons then got Duke’s Kyle Singler early in the second round. I think Singler will be a good pro. He’s such a smart, heady player. Detroit picked up a banger, Florida’s Vernon Macklin, late in Round 2. Good draft for the Pistons, I’m thinking.
- Josh Selby isn’t as good a player as Jacob Pullen. No way, no how. But Selby at least was chosen Thursday night, by the Memphis Grizzlies with the No. 49 pick. Selby has hired an agent and can’t return to Kansas for his sophomore season. I think he made a huge mistake by entering the draft and being picked in this spot supports my argument. Good luck, Josh. You’re gonna need it.
- With the No. 31 pick in the NBA draft, the Miami Heat select Bojan Bogdanovic. Pretty sure he was a “Saturday Night Live” character back in the day.
- The Los Angeles Lakers picked Chukwudiebere Maduabam with the 56th pick in the draft. I grew up with a Chukwudiebere Maduabam. Wonder if it’s the same guy?