For the first time in over a decade, Penn State basketball fans will be watching the NBA draft with the hopes of seeing one of their own step up on the stage and shake David Stern’s hand. While Talor Battle’s future won’t be defined by tonight’s draft, some of the pieces to the puzzle will have fallen into place by the time the LA Kings make the final pick of the 2011 NBA Draft.
Ultimately it is more than likely that Battle won’t hear his name called tonight. With only 60 players drafted in a quick 2 rounds, a large portion of which have come from overseas, plenty of skilled basketball players find themselves in the free agent market shopping around for a team that could use them. It is a stressful process for anyone involved, but far from the end of the road.
This doesn’t mean Battle has gone through these past few weeks unnoticed however, having worked out with the Kings, Suns, Thunder, Raptors, Wizards, Grizzlies, and Bobcats, Battle has gotten his name out to just about any team that would listen. Considering the fact that each of those teams expressed interest enough in Battle’s skills to invite him to a workout might mean that he has a better chance getting drafted than most people expect. It could also mean they intend on picking him up as a free agent, which effectively is as good as being drafted. For a small player, from a underachieving program, any attention is generally good attention.
With this in mind, here are the picks you should keep an eye out for if Battle is going hear his name called (Numbers based on pre-draft picks) Clearly, Battle won’t be going in the Top 10, and quite possibly the first round, but this is a complete listing of picks by teams showing interest in Battle. This boils down to picks:5,6,9, 13, 18, 19,24, 34, 35, 39, 49, 60
Kings: 7th, 35th, 60th.
Wizards: 6th, 18th, 34th
Bobcats:9th, 39th, 19th