After months of anticipation, workouts and hard work, Thursday’s NBA Draft at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. is just over 24 hours away. Former Syracuse studs Tyler Ennis, Jerami Grant and C.J. Fair are all expected to hear their names called, but where do they expect to go?
Ennis: He had the chance to speak with ESPN’s Andy Katz on Wednesday and told him he sees himself either going to the Orlando Magic or the Toronto Raptors. Ennis worked out for both teams. The Magic hold two picks in the first round, fourth and 12th overall, and with a need at point guard for them I could see Ennis being their selection with the latter of the two picks. The Raptors, who hold the 20th pick, would be drafting the hometown kid in Ennis, who is from Canada, but they might need to move up to get him. A sleeper would be the Chicago Bulls, who might be looking to add some depth at the point guard position behind the injury-prone Derrick Rose.
Grant: Rumors have it that the two-year forward is slightly falling on draft board’s. It is more of depth issue compared to it being something Grant or his game has done. There are a lot of talented players in this draft and if this year was any indication Grant is still growing and developing. He is long and athletic, but he is continuing to get stronger and develop his offensive game. The promise of Grant is how raw he is and how far he came in just two years with the Orange. With a basketball background coming from his father and uncle, who had long careers in the NBA, Grant can be very valuable for a team down the road as he continues to develop. I still like him to go to the Phoenix Suns most likely late in the first round or with their second round pick. Other possibilities would be Charlotte or Memphis.
Fair: He has been projected to go at some point during the second round for a while now and I don’t see that changing before Thursday night. It will be interesting to see where Syracuse’s leading scorer will end up, as he worked out for 17 times during the pre-draft process. He is a smart player who can bring some help on both sides of the ball and on the glass. He has a really good mid-range, but might need to become more consistent shooting from long-distance and developing a right-hand. Fair could end up with a handful of teams, but expect to hear his name called at some point.
Syracuse head coach Jim Beoeheim has been speaking to some newspapers and even made an appearance on the Michael Kay Show on ESPN Radio to talk about the draft with his players. Here is a look at what he told Syracuse.com’s Donna Ditota on how he thinks his three former players NBA career’s will pan out.
Ennis: “I think Tyler’s one of the best point guard prospects in the draft and if you’re looking for point guards, he’s one of the guys you have to look at. There’s enough teams that need a point guard that someone will take him.”
Grant: “Tyler has a position, where Jerami is between positions 3 and 4. He
improved his shooting (from his freshman to sophomore years). If he would have stayed another year, he would have improved it more and would have gotten stronger. So what I’ve said all along – I think he would have benefitted from staying.”
Fair: “I think he can play in the NBA. He’s just got to get to the right place. He’s physical, he’s strong, he can shoot 15 footers and make them. He’s a tough guy. Good competitor. There’s probably 20-25 teams he’d get cut. But there might be three or four that he can make the team.”
The 2014 NBA Draft will be televised on ESPN at 7 p.m. ET. Visit us for reaction to where these three Orange players go, and follow us on Twitter @LoudhouseFS.