Detroit Pistons Chooses Cade Cunningham as First Pick for 2021 NBA Draft

Detroit Pistons launched the NBA Draft Thursday night with Cade Cunningham of Oklahoma State University in first place. Cunningham was widely expected to be the first name to be called in New York, but Pistons general manager Troy Weaver did not reveal plans earlier this week, saying the team would consider all scenarios, including trading.

In the end, Detroit stuck to the 19-year-old, who was mentioned as a potential top pick, before stepping into Oklahoma State University.

The 6’8, 220-pound point guard in Arlington, Texas, lived up to expectations with his size and fluid game and became the first team’s Associated Press All-American. With an average of 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.5 assists, he was able to hit from a range of 3 points, score dribbles and find teammates in traps.

Cunningham participated in the draft wearing a dark suit, shirt and tie with sparkling collars and cuffs. When the pick was announced, Cunningham sat on his lap, kissed his two-year-old daughter Riley, hugged his family, went on stage with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, and wore a blue Pistons hat.

“It’s still pretty surreal to me,” Cunningham said. “I know how much responsibility comes with being the number one pick. I know how much responsibility the city puts on the number one man. I have those tasks. Undertake the city of Detroit. “

NBA draft basketball
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver greets Cade Cunningham, who was ranked number one overall by the Detroit Pistons in the NBA Basketball Draft on Thursday, July 29, 2021 in New York.

Corey Sipkin / AP

The first player to be ranked number one overall in Oklahoma’s history, Cunningham has won 20 games for two consecutive seasons and participated in a piston franchise that hasn’t finished more than .500 for five consecutive years. ..

Houston was in second place and grabbed teenager Jalen Green, who was preparing professionally to bypass college basketball to play in the G League. The 6’6 green showed off high-flying dunks, willingness to attack the rims, and a promising shooting touch, averaging 17.9 points when 46% shot 15 games.

Green became part of the Houston reconstruction project after James Harden traded to Brooklyn. The Rockets entered the night with three first-round picks after scoring the bottom 17 wins in the league.

“They would say it’s a great choice because of the goals I have for myself,” Green said. “I will contact them.”

NBA draft basketball
Jalen Green won the Houston Rockets cap after being selected by the Houston Rockets as his second overall pick in the first round of the NBA Basketball Draft in New York on Thursday, July 29, 2021.

Corey Sipkin / AP

Next up was Evan Mobley, a freshman from Southern California, who went to Cleveland at number three. The 7 footer has the potential to be a mobile tycoon with length and versatility to switch on. He swept the Pac-12’s personal honor while being ranked as one of the top shot blockers in the United States, helping the Trojan reach the NCAA Regional Final for the first time in 20 years.

Then came the first surprise of the night when Florida State University forward Scottie Barnes went to Toronto with a fourth-place pick. Burns is a mobile and versatile 6-8 forward that has the potential to be a powerful playmaker and elite defender.

Gonzaga freshman point guard Jalen Suggs ranked fifth in Orlando Magic, followed by a 6-foot-8 playmaking teenager Josh Gidi (believed to be a lottery) in Oklahoma City. Obtained from Australia.

The draft is behind the traditional late June slot for the second consecutive year due to the COVID-19 pandemic that interrupted the 2019-20 season. The 2021-22 season will return to normal schedule and next year’s draft will be set again in June.

Detroit Pistons Chooses Cade Cunningham as First Pick for 2021 NBA Draft

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