HIGH SCHOOLERS go 1st, 2nd, 4th and 8th; Bulls trade Brand to Clippers - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

HIGH SCHOOLERS go 1st, 2nd, 4th and 8th; Bulls trade Brand to Clippers

NEW YORK (AP) _ Already young and bad, the Chicago Bulls got younger and worse _ at least for the short term.

In a stunning trade completed midway through the first round of the NBA draft, the Bulls sent their best player, Elton Brand, to the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for the draft rights to 18-year-old center Tyson Chandler.

The Washington Wizards used the first pick on high school senior Kwame Brown of Glenn Academy in Brunswick, Ga., marking the first time an NBA team has selected a high school player No. 1 overall.

FC Barcelona forward Pau Gasol went third to Atlanta, which will send him to the Grizzlies as part of a yet-to-be-completed trade for Shareef Abdur-Rahim. No player from a foreign team had ever been drafted so high.

The Bulls also selected a high school player with the fourth pick, grabbing Eddy Curry of Thornwood H.S. in South Holland, Ill.

Curry and Chandler will make the Bulls even younger than they were last season when they had the greenest roster in league history.

``I don't remember starting two freshmen when I was a coach in college,'' Bulls coach Tim Floyd said. ``I guess I'm going to get a chance in the NBA.

``We've gotten younger, and it's going to be very difficult to replace Elton's 20 (points) and 10 (rebounds) immediately next year. We recognize this whole draft is based on potential and who these guys could become.''

Indeed, this draft was all about the allure of potential.

Three of the first four players chosen were high school seniors, and the college player of the year _ Duke's Shane Battier _ wasn't taken until the Grizzlies picked him sixth _ one spot after Golden State selected Michigan State guard Jason Richardson, a sophomore.

In another trade, the New Jersey Nets sent the rights to Eddie Griffin, selected seventh overall, to the Houston Rockets for the rights to their three first-round picks: Arizona forward Richard Jefferson (No. 13 overall), Stanford center Jason Collins (No. 18) and Pepperdine guard Brandon Armstrong (No. 23).

Also, Cleveland traded the rights to North Carolina center Brendan Hayward, the 20th overall pick, to Orlando for center Michael Doleac.

At first glance, the biggest winners of the night appeared to be the Clippers.

After taking Chandler with the No. 2 pick, they immediately traded him and forward Brian Skinner to Chicago for Brand, the No. 1 overall pick in 1999.

``It's very tough losing night after night. I just want to be on a team that has a shot at winning some games and improving,'' Brand said. ``The first two years were very rough for me and I don't want to be in that situation ever again. The Clippers are a rising team. I'm excited; they have a lot of young, great talent.''

Brown, a 6-foot-11, 240-pound center from Glynn Academy in Brunswick, Ga., stood up and hugged his family before walking on stage, smiling broadly and shaking commissioner David Stern's hand.

Stern, who has proposed a minimum age of 20 for incoming NBA players, wore a smile of his own as he watched Brown become the youngest player ever to hear his name announced first at an NBA draft.

Brown originally planned to attend the University of Florida before changing his mind when he learned he might be chosen among the top five. As a high school senior, he averaged 20.1 points and 13.3 rebounds and was selected player of the year in the state of Georgia.

``I guess I just made history. It's great. I've never been so overwhelmed and nervous in my life,'' Brown said. ``I'm now the representative of all high school seniors, and I have to show it wasn't a mistake.''

The Wizards considered trading the pick, but team president Michael Jordan locked in on a player with enormous potential in a draft considered top heavy with big men.

``We were entertaining possibilities, but nothing could change our minds as to what he could do for the Washington Wizards,'' Jordan said.

Chandler, 18, has been a starter on one of the nation's top high school teams since his freshman season. Earlier this year, it was believed he and Curry might be drafted first and second overall.

Now, they will be teammates.

``When I heard, I was just shocked. I sat back and said, `Are you sure?''' Chandler said. ``It's really ironic, but it's a great opportunity for two high school players to learn and grow together. Hopefully, we can start a new dynasty.''

Cleveland used the eighth selection on high school senior DeSagana Diop of Oak Hill Academy (Va.), a 7-footer originally from Senegal.

The Nets-Rockets trade was announced at the end of the first round.

``I talked with Steve (Francis) and Cuttino (Mobley) and they're very excited,'' Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich said. ``We think it's a real good fit, and we couldn't be happier.''

In trades involving second-round picks, the Magic fulfilled their obligation to send a future first-round pick to Denver by trading Omar Cook, who they selected 32nd overall, to the Nuggets.

Also, the Hawks dealt Maryland forward Terence Morris (No. 34) to Houston for a future No. 1 pick, and Seattle sent the draft rights to Bobby Simmons (No. 42, DePaul) to Washington for the rights to Predrag Drobnjak.

High school senior Ousmane Cisse of Montgomery, Ala., went 47th to Denver, and Cincinnati point guard Kenny Satterfield dropped all the way to 54th, where he was taken by Dallas.
Powered by Frankly
News On 6
303 N. Boston Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74103
Newson6.com is proud to provide Oklahomans with timely and relevant news and information, sharing the stories, pictures and loves of Oklahomans across our great state.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 KOTV. Oklahoma Traveler™ is a registered trademark of Griffin Communications. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.