Tonight’s D-League draft features a deeper talent pool than ever, and according to Scott Schroeder of NBA FanHouse, former Mavericks second round pick Nick Fazekas will be the first player selected overall. The Reno Bighorns, coached by former NBAer Eric Musselman, own the No. 1 pick, and will add Fazekas to an already talented group of quasi-NBA players including Donald Sloan, Patrick Ewing Jr., and Marcus Landry.
As Schroeder notes in his report, Fazekas has played in France and Belgium since being cut loose by both the Mavs and the Clippers, but returns a rather coveted prospect. Though Fazekas’ NBA draft stock was never all that high, his D-League profile is perhaps better paralleled by his résumé of statistical projections. Coming out of Nevada, Fazekas was highly touted by John Hollinger’s pre-draft player rater for ESPN.com Insider (which ranked Fazekas as the 7th best prospect in the 2007 draft, just behind Al Horford), and even after a year in the league, Dave Berri (of Wages of Wins fame) continued to sing Fazekas’ praises as a legitimate NBA player. It’s hard to say where exactly Fazekas’ game is now after being removed from NBA competition for a spell, but he was already an interesting prospect before jumping across the pond, and is that and then some as he tops the D-League’s draft board.
Ty Lawson is headed to the Kings, as first reported on Monday. The team made the move official on Wednesday with a press release, and USA Today‘s Sam Amick offers up another important piece of information: Lawson’s deal is not guaranteed, making it essentially a make-good camp invite.
It’s staggering how Lawson went from a borderline All-Star level point guard in 2012-13 to signing a non-guaranteed one-year deal with a lottery team three years later. His off-the-court issues have contributed to that, and he didn’t produce last season in Houston and Indiana. Still, he should have a pretty good chance of making the Kings’ roster, with Seth Curry and Rajon Rondo gone and Darren Collison their only proven point guard. They need depth there.
When Ben Simmons declared for the NBA draft this spring, he signed with LeBron James‘ Klutch Sports group for representation. That association would appear to have its advantages for the No. 1 overall pick, including the opportunity to work out with James and Dwyane Wade during the offseason. Wade posted a group photo on Instagram on Wednesday afternoon:
Also, it’s pretty staggering to see Simmons standing next to James and realizing that he’s bigger and taller.
Thanks to a match from an anonymous donor, beloved TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager was able to receive his third bone-marrow transplant since 2014 in an extended battle with leukemia. Sager’s son, Craig Sager II, shared a photo on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon of his father undergoing the transplant, appearing to be in good spirits as usual.
Our continued well wishes go out to Sager and his family in his recovery, and we hope to see him back on the sidelines this season.
Last season, the Sacramento Kings signed Seth Curry, brother of Stephen Curry. He left this summer for Dallas, and now the Kings are working out the brother of the other Splash Brother — Klay Thompson‘s brother Mychel — according to international basketball reporter David Pick.
Mychel Thompson’s only NBA experience is five games with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2011-12. He spent some time in the D-League after that, and played in Italy during the 2015-16 season.