Draft Notes: Haliburton, Wiseman, Ball, International Players

In a draft full of uncertain prospects, Iowa State’s Tyrese Haliburton may be the safest pick, writes Steve Popper of Newsday. Haliburton offers good size for a point guard at 6’5″ with a 6’9″ wingspan. He’s also an elite passer, an effective shooter and has natural leadership qualities.

“I’ve had a lot of No. 1, No. 2 picks, and this guy is a difference maker,” said Joe Abunassar, who trained Haliburton at Impact Basketball in Las Vegas after the season was shut down. “As teams look at him, part of that is his approach, his mentality, his personality. Everyone steps up their game when he steps in the game. He’s the most humble guy. I know with him, what you’re getting is a guy that’s going to win games for your franchise.”

Abunasser said Haliburton has gotten stronger since the college basketball season ended, adding roughly 15 to 18 pounds to his frame. With so many lottery teams needing a point guard, he could go higher than projected on draft night.

“He’s a winner. He has an amazing personality,” Abunassar added. “He’s contagious. He’s something that if I was a GM, I’d say we need guys like that.”

There’s more draft news to pass along:

  • There’s increasing chatter around the league that former Memphis center James Wiseman is the most likely No. 1 pick, according to Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report. Sources tell Wasserman that some Golden State officials believe Wiseman will be selected first, whether the Timberwolves keep their pick or not. Sources also say the Hornets “want Wiseman badly” and are interested in trading up to get him.
  • Warriors ownership may put pressure on the front office to select LaMelo Ball with the second pick if Wiseman is off the board, Wasserman adds in the same story. A source close to the team claims Ball has supporters and detractors in the front office. Golden State remains in the market to trade down, with Deni Avdija and Devin Vassell as possible targets.
  • More international prospects have pulled their names out of the draft ahead of today’s deadline, according to Nicola Lupo of SportandoNikola Miskovic, Marko Simonovic and Darko Bajo, all of ABA Liga, have all withdrawn. At No. 70, Simonovic was the only one in ESPN’s list of the top 100 prospects. Serbian big man Filip Petrusev (story link), who is 59th on ESPN’s list, and Lithuanian guard Rokas Jokubaitis (story link) are also skipping this year’s draft. On Saturday, we shared decisions from seven other overseas players.
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10 thoughts on “Draft Notes: Haliburton, Wiseman, Ball, International Players

  1. Warrior front office will not get pressure from ownership. Ownership backs off on what the GM does. Monte Ellis a ownership favorite was traded away. Ball is not in the cards for GSW.

    • 4thinfsgt

      I agree. So much talk about the possibility of taking lavar’s son 2nd overall to the Warriors when there are far better players available.

    • I'm a starboy not a Dr...

      Okungwu makes sense for warriors. If not then sign Christian Wood and whomever else they draft , trade the pick.

  2. doug.daniel243

    All I know is the hornets will find a way to screw up this draft unfortunately

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      Looks like it. Trading up for a future bust is never a good thing.

  3. Sillivan

    The fair trade for Hornets to get Wiseman.

    Wolves get 3 and Hornets 2021 top-6 protected
    Warriors get 3 and Hornets 2021 top-8 protected

    If not happening, then teams get Hornets 2022 top 5 protected.

  4. Sillivan


    Who says no? Hornets or Wolves?

    Rozier and No. 32 for Culver and James Johnson.

    IMO, value comparison
    this year’s No.32 is equal to last year’s No. 6 pick.

    No. 32 Jaden McDaniels can play both PF and SF.

    • hiflew

      I don’t think I have ever seen anyone be wrong this many times in a single comment. By my count, it is 6, but it’s debatable.

  5. I'm a starboy not a Dr...

    I see Edwards going to wolves, warriors should take Okungwu,hornets will find a way to get Wiseman,don’t care about what hawks/bulls do, I see knicks taking Ball,don’t care what pistons do, Haliburton may be there for the suns to take…

  6. lmaooo wolves are full of s**t. Grasping at straws trying to get trade bait. Hornets should just sit back and get whoever comes to them.

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