Saturday, October 31, 2015

Three Former NBLC Players Selected in D-League Draft

The NBA D-League held their 2015 Draft on Saturday, with 3 former NBLC players hearing their names called. The D-League draft is an eight round event in which more than 200 players are made eligible to be picked by the 19 teams in the league. When a player is selected by a D-League team, their affiliate at the NBA level holds the player's NBA rights as well. Here is a look at the three former NBLC players picked this year.

Kevin Young - Bakersfield Jam, 1st Round, 17th pick overall

The Jam made Young their first round pick after he dominated NBL Canada this past season, with the 6'8 power forward averaging 17 points, 9 rebounds and 3 assists, his only season in the league, as a member of the Halifax Rainmen on their way to the NBLC Finals. Young also has the pedigree of coming from Kansas University, one of the finest basketball schools in America, and is still young at 25 years old. Bakersfield is coming off a 34-16 season in which they came third place in their conference, but were bounced in the first round of the playoffs. As a first rounder, Young will likely make the team, and be asked to play a large role for the Jam

Travis Releford - Idaho Stampede, 3rd Round, 46th pick overall

Young's former Kansas teammate Releford was snapped up by the Stampede in the third round. Like Young, Releford only played one season in Canada, playing most of last season with the now defunct Mississauga Power. He was one of the few bright spots during a trying season for the Power, averaging 21 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists as a SG/SF tweener. Only 25 years old, he heads to the Utah Jazz affiliated Stampede, who had a season nearly as bad as Mississauga's, going 9-41, the worst record in the league.

Jeremy Williams - Idaho Stampede, 5th Round, 77th pick overall
 The most accomplished of the three players at the NBLC level, Jeremy Williams was taken in the fifth round, and will be joining Releford in Idaho. Williams has played three seasons in Canada, including a championship he earned as a member of the London Lightning. He has been a consistent contributor, averaging 10 points and 5 rebounds per game during stops with the Lightning, Storm and Mill Rats. This is the second time he has been picked, as the Bakersfield Jam picked him in the fifth round in 2013, but have since relinquished his rights.

While not every player selected in the draft will make a roster, it nonetheless is an incredible accomplishment for these players, while marking a large step in their development as pros.

*Some quick notes: 1. Not all picks are final, and could be traded after this post.
2.While some sources list Delaware draftee Myck Kabongo as a former NBLC player, there is no record of it. This was likely an error, confusing him for former Lightning player Christian Kabongo. 
3. Some sources do not list Jeremy Williams, instead listing Brian Williams. This was likely an error as well.