The worst european NBA Draft in 15 years?
1994. Glenn "Big Dog" Robinson, from Purdue (NCAA), was choosen with the number 1 by Milwaukee at the NBA Draft. Behind him? Jason Kidd (Dallas), Grant Hill (Detroit), Donyell Marshall (Minnesota) and Juwan Howard (Washington). Let's take a look to the europeans in the first round. None. Russian Andrei Fetisov (Boston) and serbian Zeljko Rebraca (Seattle) -at the pic- appeared in the second. Since that year always european prospects were choosen, eventhough in 1997 (french Olivier SaintJean) and 1995 (polish George Zidek) the only player there was coming from american college. This is far, but in a few weeks we can live the same situation.
French Kevin Seraphin ('89), from Cholet, is the only european in the two most attractive mocks: number 21 at DraftExpress and number 26 at Nbadraft.net. After czech Jan Vesely ('90) and Donatas Motiejunas ('90) decided to withdraw the european view of the draft is getting worst every day more. Seraphin got injured some days ago in a french league's game, and some rumors put him in the same queue. Who has options to make it maybe in last positions of first round? Robin Benzing ('89)? Miroslav Raduljica ('88)? Nemanja Bjelica ('88)? Really toung and hard to say.
What is happening? NBA franchises are not in love with european flavor as past years? Is the 1988 generation one or two steps down from the others? Is Fran Vazquez decision still affecting us? Take a look to the europeans on last drafts in first round.
2009: Ricky Rubio (5), Victor Claver (22), Omri Casspi (23) and Rodrigue Beaubois (25).
2008: Danilo Gallinari (6), Alexis Ajinca (20), Kosta Koufos (23) and Nicolas Batum (25).
2007: Joakim Noah (9), Marco Belinelli (18), Rudy Fernández (24) and Petteri Koponen (30).
2006: Andrea Bargnani (1), Thabo Sefolosha (13), Oleksiy Pecherov (18), Sergio Rodríguez (27) and Joel Freeland (30).
2005: Fran Vazquez (11), Yaroslav Korolev (12), Johan Petro (25), Linas Kleiza (27) and Ian Mahinmi (28).
2004: Andris Biedrins (11), Pavel Pdkolzine (21), Viktor Khryapa (22), Sergei Monia (23), Sasha Vujacic (27) and Beno Udrih (28). Also current brits Gordon and Deng.
2003: Darko Milicic (2), Mickael Pietrus (11), Zarko Cabarkapa (17), Aleksandar Pavlovic (19), Boris Diaw (21) and Zoran Planinic (22).
2002: Nikoloz Tsikitishvili (5), Bostjan Nachbar (15), Jiri Welsch (16) and Nenad Krstic (24).
2001: Pau Gasol (3), Vladimir Radmanovic (12), Raul López (24) and Tony Parker (28).
2000: Jerome Moiso (11), Hidayet Turkoglu (16), Dalibor Bagaric (24), Iakovos Tsakalidis (25) and Primoz Brezec (27).
1999: Alek Radojevic (12), Frederic Weis (15) and Andrei Kirilenko (24).
1998: Michael Olowakandi (1), Dirk Nowitzki (9), Radoslav Nesterovic (17), Mirsad Turkcan (18) and Vladimir Stepania (27).
1997: Olivier SaintJean (11).
1996: Vitaly Potapenko (12), Predrag Stojakovic (14), Zydrunas Ilgauskas (20), Efthimios Rentzias (23) and Martin Muursepp (25).
1995: George Zidek (22).