LAWRENCE, Kan. –Two former Kansas men’s basketball standouts will look to join elite company on Thursday, June 28, as Thomas Robinson and Tyshawn Taylor wait to hear their names called in the 2012 NBA Draft. The draft will be televised live on ESPN and ESPN3 at 6 p.m. CT from Newark, N.J.
Robinson won’t have to wait long as he is a projected top-five pick, while Taylor has been anticipated to go anywhere from the late first round to mid second round. The two Jayhawks will look to be the 14th and 15th players drafted during the Bill Self era. If Robinson is selected with one of the first five picks he will be the highest Jayhawk taken since Drew Gooden was selected fourth overall in 2002. Robinson is one of 14 players who was invited to attend the 2012 NBA Draft.
If Robinson and Taylor are both selected in the first round, it will be the seventh timeKansas hashad multiple NBA first round picks in the same year: 1997 (Scot Pollard and Jacque Vaughn), 1998 (Raef LaFrentz and Paul Pierce), 2003 (Nick Collison and Kirk Hinrich), 2008 (Brandon Rush and Darrell Arthur), 2010 (Xavier Henry and Cole Aldrich) and 2011 (Markieff and Marcus Morris).
Since the inception of the Big 12 in 1996-97, KU has had 21 players drafted in the NBA, which is the most of any league member. Over the last decade, KU is tied with UCLA for producing the most NBA Draft picks in the nation with 15. Three KU draft picks recently played for the 2012 NBA Championship, with 2008 second-rounder Mario Chalmers helping the Miami Heat win the crown.
Kentucky’s Anthony Davis is projected to be the No. 1 overall selection.If Robinson goes second, it would be the first draft in NBA history in which each of the top two picks played against each other in the preceding national championship game, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
What the media are saying about Thomas Robinson:
CBSSports.com’s Jeff Goodman:“We’re hearing that Charlotte prefers Robinson – the athletic and relentless power forward.” Link
SportingNews.com – “The Bobcats’ pick will come down to Robinson, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist or Bradley Beal. The guess here is that, with Robinson measuring up nicely at the predraft combine, his talent is too much to pass up.” Link
SI.com’s Sam Amick via Twitter – “In the continuing draft circuit, I’m told Kansas F ThomasRobinson had his way w/ UConn C Andre Drummond in a Cleveland workout today (No.2).”
ESPN.com’s Ryan Feldman – “Kansas’ Thomas Robinson would the best choice for Charlotte. Robinson scored the 14th-most points in the country as the (pick and) roll man, ranked second in rebounds per game, and led the nation in defensive rebounding percentage.” Link
ESPN.com’s Eamonn Brennan – “Bottom line: At the very least, Robinson will do what every NBA power forward must do: He will rebound. He has the athleticism and tangible production to back that prediction. Worst case, if he ends up becoming a more-skilled Kenneth Faried, well, which NBA coach wouldn’t sign up for that?” Link
NBA.com’s Drew Packham – “Thomas Robinson is gaining traction as the No. 2 pick to Charlotte. In our previous look, the Kansas big man was pegged there five times. Now, he’s going second on 10 of the 11 mocks (drafts).” Link
CBSSports.com’s Jeff Goodman:“The Bulls could use a backup for Derrick Rose. Taylor is fast, tough and has four years of college experience at Kansas.”Link
SI.com -“Gotta prove he can be consistent taking care of the ball, but he’s very talented. His size and athleticism at that position are pretty good.”Link
SI.com – “He’s dangerous in the open court and as a penetrator in half-court sets because of his quickness, athleticism and leaping ability — some of those same strengths make him a capable defender.” Link
NBA.com – “There’s no question Taylor has the athleticism required in the NBA. He’s also got decent size for the point guard position. He’s been projected as a second-round pick, and he can stick in the right system. He’s capable of making a great play one time down the floor and throwing a pass out of bounds the next, but he thrives on the chaotic nature of his game.” Link