Leon Powe Drafted by Denver Nuggets
June 28, 2006
BERKELEY - Former Cal forward Leon Powe, who led the Pac-10 in both scoring and rebounding last season, was selected with the 49th pick of the NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets Wednesday night.
A second-team Associated Press All-American in 2006, Powe was the 19th choice of the second round. He joins center Francisco Elson, who played for the Bears from 1998-99, on the Nuggets' roster.
The 6-8, 240-pound Powe is the first Cal player drafted since Jamal Sampson was a second-round selection of the Milwaukee Bucks in 2002.
As a sophomore last season, Powe averaged 20.5 ppg and 10.1 rpg. He was named to the All-Pac-10 team and was voted MVP of the Pac-10 Tournament after leading the Bears to the final for the first time.
Powe grabbed a career-high 20 rebounds against USC in the quarterfinals in the Pac-10 Tournament, and he scored a personal-best 41 points one night later vs. Oregon in the Pac-10 semifinals.
Powe was named the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year in 2004 when he became the first freshman in the history of the conference to lead the league in rebounding (9.5 rpg). Also an All-Pac-10 choice, he poured in 15.1 ppg.
Powe had surgery on his left knee in April 2004 and sat out the 2004-05 campaign as a medical redshirt. However, he didn't seem to skip a beat upon his return, tallying 27 points in his first game back vs. San Jose State on Nov. 30, 2005.
Powe declared for the NBA Draft following his sophomore season. He was the fourth player from the Pac-10 drafted Wednesday, following Washington's Brandon Roy (5th overall), UCLA's Jordan Farmar (26th) and Washington's Bobby Jones (37th).