2019 NBA Draft: Tracking former Pac-12 stars selected in Brooklyn
Washington's Matisse Thybulle (20th overall) and USC's Kevin Porter Jr. (30th overall) were selected in the 2019 NBA Draft first round Thursday in Brooklyn. All told, six former Pac-12 stars were selected, tying a record for NBA Draft picks over a three-year span, racking up 27 from 2017-19. The Pac-12 also had 27 from 2007-09.
No. 20 overall: Matisse Thybulle
Though Boston drafted Thybulle at No. 20 overall, the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year and Naismith National Defensive Player of the Year will start his professional career with the 76ers organization. Thybulle, who averaged 9.1 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists for the Huskies, becomes UW's fourth first-round pick in the last four years. The crafty defender was a late addition to the NBA Draft Green Room but is the first Pac-12 player selected among a talented 2019 class. The Huskies also had the Pac-12's top pick in 2017 when Markelle Fultz was selected No. 1 overall by Philadelphia.
No. 30 overall: Kevin Porter Jr.
Like Thybulle, Porter Jr. was drafted pending a trade. The Bucks selected the athletic USC guard with the final pick in the first round, with a proposed trade to the Cavs on the table. Porter Jr. becomes the first USC student-athlete drafted in the first round since Nikola Vucevic in 2011. The Cavs had two other first-round picks, selecting Darius Garland No. 5 and Dylan Windler No. 26. During his freshman season at USC, Porter Jr. shot 41.2% from downtown and 47.1% from the field.
No. 32 overall: KZ Okpala
Okpala, who went No. 32 overall to the Suns pending a trade to Miami, becomes Stanford's first NBA Draft selection since 2015 — Anthony Brown to the Lakers. The forward led the Cardinal in scoring during his sophomore season at 16.8 points per game while also chipping in 5.7 boards and 2.0 assists per game.
No. 43 overall: Jaylen Nowell
The 2018-19 Pac-12 Player of the Year went off the board with the 43rd pick to Minnesota, giving the Dawgs two players selected in the same draft for the first time since 2016. Nowell posted averages of 16.2 points, 5.3 boards and 3.1 assists while shooting 50.2 percent from the floor.
No. 44 overall: Bol Bol
Bol Bol's widely-anticipated selection came in the second round Thursday with Miami's 44th pick. But the Heat promptly traded Bol to the Denver Nuggets. Bol's selection gives the Ducks draftees in three straight years, as he joins Troy Brown, Jordan Bell, Tyler Dorsey and Dillon Brooks. Though his season was shortened by injury, Bol shot 52 percent from beyond the 3-point line. The 7-foot-2 prospect will play in the NBA like his late father, Manute Bol, who starred for the Warriors and 76ers.
Bol Bol exits to cheers and high fives after being selected at No. 44 pic.twitter.com/1p7ajeZh5T— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) June 21, 2019
No. 56 overall: Jaylen Hands
Hands, the Pac-12 leader in assists last season (6.1 per game), was tabbed late in the second round by the Clippers, pending a trade to Brooklyn. Hands' selection gives the Bruins draftees in three straight years; he joins Lonzo Ball, Ike Anigbogu, Aaron Holiday and Thomas Welsh.