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Class in Session: 2020-21 NBA Rookies

Anthony Edwards (L) and James Wiseman (Photo Credit: Reuters)

Anthony Edwards (L) and James Wiseman (Photo Credit: Reuters)

What do this season's rookies have in store? Here are some notes on the 2020 NBA Draft class.

Two years ago, the top five picks in the 2018 NBA Draft comprised the 2018-19 All-NBA Rookie First Team. Last season, however, the 2019-20 NBA All-Rookie First Team included one second-round pick from the 2019 NBA Draft (Eric Paschall) and one player who went undrafted in the 2018 NBA Draft (Kendrick Nunn). What do this season’s rookies have in store? Here are some notes on the 2020 NBA Draft class:

• No. 1 pick Anthony Edwards (Minnesota Timberwolves) led all NCAA freshmen in scoring last season (19.1 ppg).

• No. 2 pick James Wiseman (Golden State Warriors) was ESPN’s top-ranked basketball recruit in 2019.

• No. 3 pick LaMelo Ball, the brother of the New Orleans Pelicans’ Lonzo Ball, last season became the first player in Australia’s National Basketball League to record triple-doubles in back-to-back games since 2005.


• No. 4 pick Patrick Williams (Chicago Bulls) did not start a game in his one college season at Florida State.

• No. 7 pick Killian Hayes (Detroit Pistons), an All-Star at Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Global camps as part of NBA All-Star 2018 and 2019, is the highest-drafted French player ever.

• No. 8 pick Obi Toppin (New York Knicks), lightly recruited in high school, was the consensus 2019-20 National Player of the Year at Dayton. ANTHONY EDWARDS

• No. 9 pick Deni Avdija (Washington Wizards), the MVP of BWB Europe 2018 and BWB Global 2019, is the highest-drafted Israeli player ever.

• N o. 12 pick Tyrese Haliburton (Sacramento Kings) is a cousin of three-time NBA All-Star Eddie Jones.

• No. 15 pick Cole Anthony (Orlando Magic) is the son of Turner Sports basketball analyst Greg Anthony, who played 11 seasons in the NBA.

• The selection of No. 20 pick Precious Achiuwa (Miami Heat) and No. 27 pick Udoka Azubuike (Utah Jazz) marks the first time that two players from Nigeria were selected in the first round of the same NBA Draft.

• No. 23 pick Leandro Bolmaro (drafted by New York Knicks; now with Minnesota Timberwolves) is the highest-drafted Argentine player ever.

• No. 26 pick Payton Pritchard (Boston Celtics) last season became the first player to lead the Pac-12 in scoring and assists since Jason Terry in 1998-99.

• No. 28 pick Jaden McDaniels (drafted by Los Angeles Lakers; now with Minnesota Timberwolves) and No. 41 pick Tre Jones (San Antonio Spurs) are the brothers of NBA players Jalen McDaniels (Charlotte Hornets) and Tyus Jones (Memphis Grizzlies).

• No. 32 pick Vernon Carey Jr. (Charlotte Hornets) is the son of Vernon Carey, who played eight seasons in the NFL as an offensive lineman.

• No. 34 pick Théo Maledon (drafted by Philadelphia 76ers; now with Oklahoma City Thunder) played for ASVEL, a French team run by NBA legend Tony Parker.

• No. 38 pick Saben Lee (drafted by Utah Jazz; now with Detroit Pistons) is the son of former Florida State All-America and NFL running back Amp Lee.

• No. 48 pick Nico Mannion (Golden State Warriors) is the son of former NBA and Italian League player Pace Mannion.

• No. 52 pick KJ Martin (drafted by Sacramento Kings; now with Houston Rockets) is the son of Kenyon Martin, the first pick in the 2000 NBA Draft.

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first published:December 20, 2020, 13:17 IST