NBA Draft could be unprecedented night for Triangle players

Duke forward Harry Giles (ABC11 Photojournalist Charlie Mickens)

An unprecedented night could be in store for NBA hopefuls with Triangle ties. Seven players in all could be drafted in the 1st round of tonight's NBA draft.

Here's the breakdown: Four from Duke (Tatum, Kennard, Giles, Jackson), two from UNC (Jackson, Bradley) and a lone wolf from N.C. State (Smith Jr.). If things go as planned it would be the most players chosen in the 1st round from local ACC schools since 2012 when six were chosen led by North Carolina star Harrison Barnes.

Here's what to watch for in Brooklyn.

Trades:

This has been a crazy week already and certainly teams are itching to move up or down in the draft. As the hours near expect one or two franchises to make a move. Many general managers and scouts think this years' class is deep... meaning there's value in moving down and having more picks versus a higher one.

Tar Heel fans will probably be glad to see Jayson Tatum leaving Duke. Tatum averaged 18.7 points and seven rebounds per game in three meetings with UNC in his one season at Duke.

Tatum Off the board first (locally):

Consensus is he's got the NBA physicality/versatility and NBA moves already in place.

North Carolina's Justin Jackson had 21 points against Texas Southern on Friday.

Most likely to drop:

I'll say Justin Jackson. No disrespect here but Jackson is still trying to put on weight and not as versatile or explosive of the other guys. Before you send me mean messages, I hope that I'm wrong okay?

UNC's Tony Bradley had a season high 14 points in just 18 minutes of action in a Nov. 21 win against Chaminade.

Most likely to rise:

Tony Bradley. UNC's first "one and done" in a while is done with school for a reason. He's talented and big (6'10", 248 lbs). He's been showing an improved jump shot during workouts. With his upside he could go from a first round bubble guy to a mid-first rounder.
Time to put the crystal ball down and watch what unfolds!

READ MORE: Where will NC players go in the NBA draft?

Related Topics:
sportsnba draftDuke Blue Devilsnorth carolina newsNC State WolfpackUNC Tar Heels
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