Besides the big names, there were two players I was actively cheering for last night: Isaiah Thomas and Xavier Silas. And the reason being is that most people assumed they were going to go undrafted. Thankfully, Zeke was picked by the Kings with the 60th pick, but Silas wasn’t so lucky. “Well, I went undrafted,” Silas tweeted after all the picks were in. “All that means is that this journey will be a bit more interesting for you and me. Quote me on this… A journey isn’t a journey without a journey.” You gotta love the positive outlook. So for every Kyrie Irving, there’s a J.J. Barea – a guy who gets overlooked on Draft Night but makes a huge impact in the League. With that, here’s are the top 10 players that didn’t hear their named called last night.
1. Demetri McCamey, Illinois
If the Illini had a better season, then McCamey would have been drafted. It’s that easy. Now he’s going to have to fight his way in. He’s a legit PG with size, and I can think of at least five NBA teams that could use someone like him – most notably the Bulls. After trading Norris Cole to Miami, look for McCamey to fight for a roster spot in Chicago next season.
2. David Lighty, Ohio State
Just like bubble teams in the NCAA Tournament, someone’s gotta be left out of the party. And last night, that someone was Lighty. As his former teammate Evan Turner tweeted, “If lighty doesnt get picked i will be sincerely pissed. 4real.” I guess E.T. was pissed. You can’t be mad that he wasn’t drafted, but expect him to find his way in to the NBA next season.
3. Scotty Hopson, Tennessee
He never quite lived up to expectations at Tennessee, has all the tools needed to be a solid NBA player. Give him some time overseas or in the D-League to get his head right – that is, if he wants to stick with basketball – and he’ll find his way into training camp.
4. Jereme Richmond, Illinois
He didn’t have quite the freshman season that he was hoping for with the Illini, but all the talent is there. Had he stayed in school, he could have been a lottery pick next season. Now he’ll have to fight to make a team. The looming lockout might actually be good for Richmond though, giving him an axe to grind and more time to work on his game.
5. Matt Howard, Butler
His teammate Shelvin Mack was drafted 34th overall by the Wizards, and you know he was hoping that Howard got drafted as well. Until their back-to-back championship game runs, no one really looked at Howard as having NBA prospects. But a couple game-winners will change that. He does all the little things right, so look for a team to take a chance on him in the future.