The NBA draft lottery remains a month away, but Chad Ford of ESPN is convinced Buddy Hield is going to be one of the first names announced by Adam Silver in June. If the Pelicans remain in the sixth draft position, a 43.9% likelihood, and Hield is still on the board, the odds are he'll be with New Orleans come next training camp.
This may be Hield's floor. He should be in the mix for Boston and Minnesota, and I think it will be hard for the Pelicans to pass on him if he's still on the board.
In case you're wondering, the latest DraftExpress mock draft has Hield going seventh, following on the heels of Jamal Murray's selection off the board.
A little over a week ago, Buddy Hield walked away with the 2016 Wooden Award, narrowly edging out Denzel Valentine for the honors. Anthony Davis won the award in 2012 and names like Blake Griffin and Kevin Durant also populate the winner's list. However, not all recent winners have gone on to have highly successful NBA careers, as evidenced by Jimmer Fredette, Tyler Hansbrough and possibly Trey Burke.
Hield also took home the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award, one of four new awards created last year. D'Angelo Russell was named the winning recipient in the inaugural season.
Before the start of this past collegiate season, Buddy Hield was not even projected to be an NBA first round draft selection. However after posting averages of 25.0 points, 4.0 threes, 5.7 rebounds and 1.1 steals in his senior year, Hield has vaulted to a position well inside the lottery.
"I always dreamed of hitting the lotto," Hield said flashing his famous smile. "And this is the closest I'll ever get."
Plenty of local fans would be thrilled if the lottery results in Hield donning a Pelicans jersey once meaningful basketball is played again in the Crescent City.