Former Hawks player Lorenzo Charles dies in bus crash


Lorenzo Charles, who played one season for the Atlanta Hawks but is best remembered as a basketball hero of North Carolina State’s second national championship, has died in a bus crash.

Charles, 47, was driving the bus, which had no passengers when the accident occurred, on Interstate 40 near Durham, N.C. No other vehicles were involved.

Charles was a second-round pick of the Hawks and played 36 games for them in 1986. That was his only season in the NBA.

He is better remembered as the hero of North Carolina State’s 1983 national championship — he grabbed Dereck Whittenburg’s 30-foot missed desperation shot and dunked it at the buzzer to give N.C. State a 54-52 win over Houston (a team that featured Hakeem Olajuwon) and a second national title for coach Jim Valvano.

Mark Cuban suggests supplemental draft for undrafted free agents

Mark Cuban
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A lot of people around the NBA have ideas to improve the draft, free agency and the D-League, and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has never been shy about sharing his. His latest idea seems pretty logical: a supplemental draft for undrafted free agents.

Via Hoops Rumors:

“I would have a supplemental draft every summer for undrafted free agents of the current and previous 3 years,” Cuban wrote in an email to Hoops Rumors. “If you are more than 3 years out you are not eligible and just a free agent.”

The supplemental draft would have two rounds, and teams would hold the rights to the players they select for two years, Cuban added. Players can opt out and choose not to make themselves eligible, but those who get picked would receive fully guaranteed minimum-salary contracts when they sign, according to Cuban’s proposal.

“That would make it fun a few weeks after the draft and pre-summer league,” Cuban wrote. “It would prevent some of the insanity that goes on to build summer league rosters.”

It’s an interesting proposition. Most undrafted players who sign during the summer don’t get guaranteed contracts, so when deciding to enter this supplemental draft, they would have to weigh the value of having guaranteed money versus getting to decide where they sign. It’s unlikely that anything like this could happen anytime soon, because of all the hoops to jump through to get the league and the players’ union to sign off on it, but it’s a worthwhile idea that deserves some consideration in the next CBA negotiations.