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The Draft Review
Remembering Wayman Tisdale E-mail


On Friday, May 15, 2009, Wayman Tisdale passed away at the age of 44 after a courageous two year battle with bone cancer.

On the Court

Tisdale

Tisdale was selected 2nd overall in the 1985 NBA draft by the Indiana Pacers. His 12 year NBA career also included time with the Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns. During that time he averaged 15.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game. Tisdale was a reliable low post scorer and regarded as a great teammate and solid competitor. His best days were his early years with Sacramento. He was an excellent fit for former coach Dick Motta’s forward oriented offense.

The Oklahoma alum’s collegiate career is as impressive as it gets. Tisdale was a three time Big Eight Player of the Year and the first in college basketball history to be named first team all American in his freshman, sophomore and junior seasons. He left school for the NBA after his junior season and still holds Oklahoma’s record for all time points and rebounds. His college career was so profound that it propelled him into the College Basketball Hall of Fame 2009.

Off the Court

Tisdale’s story is one example of several important reasons I founded The Draft Review. It’s obviously vital to chronicle players’ careers with background information and statistics, yet I find it as equally important to understand who the players are on a personal level and how success or tragedy shaped their lives.

About two years ago I approached Tisdale for an interview. He politely responded by telling me that he wasn’t feeling well and he would be back in touch after things improved. It wasn’t until after this quick email exchange that I learned of Tisdale’s fight with cancer and the chemotherapy he had recent undergone. This brought back memories of a family member who had also undergone chemo and reminded me of the challenges involved in recovering from this difficult procedure.

 
Site Update: Early Entry E-mail
The Early Entry lists from 2005-2009 have been updated with profiles of undrafted players filled with favorites such as D'Mond Grismore, Caner Oner, Ronald Ogoke to name few.
 
On Fire! with Matthew Maurer - Is Joel Embiid worth the #1 pick? E-mail

 

Matthew Maurer of TheDraftReview.com talks about Joel Embiid of Kansas is he worth the #1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft?

 
Remembering Lorezen Wright: The Baron of Memphis Basketball E-mail


In cities across America there are basketball legends who are embraced locally. Anfernee Hardaway gets this respect in Memphis. In many ways he can be considered the king in Memphis – royalty in basketball as best to ever grace the city’s courts. And like every king with his royal heritage, there will be others who possess similar noble swag. Lorenzen Wright can be counted among nobles in that city. He is the Baron of Memphis basketball.

Lorenzen Wright at Memphis

Wright can claim such status in this city due to his University of Memphis pedigree and the upbringing of his father, Herb, who was a talented basketball player in his own right. Wright’s lineage is marked with basketball royalty only shared by a select few. From a young age he learned perseverance and toughness as he witnessed his father overcome adversity after being wheelchair bound. Herb played professionally and starred at Oral Roberts, although not a spectacular player, he understood the game and dabbled overseas before returning to Memphis.

While at a local community center, thugs shot Herb in the back in retaliation for his breaking up a fight earlier that evening. Despite this adversity he continued to teach Lorenzen the game and even earned a head coaching spot at Shelby Community College on the women’s team.

Wright’s grandmother raised him in Oxford, Mississippi for most of his life. With his parents in Memphis, Wright would frequently visit his father and spent a good portion of the summer months with his parents receiving training on his game. Wright played his first two years at Lafayette high school in Mississippi, taking his team to the state title as a sophomore before losing to Mississippi powerhouse Lanier (led by Georgetown bound Jerry Nichols).

But how could a player born and, for the most part, raised in Mississippi endear himself to the people of Memphis? After a fateful conversation with his parents, Lorenzen made the difficult decision to leave Lafayette High School and play his remaining years at Booker T. Washington in Memphis. The decision proved to be a great move, as he raised his profile on the court, averaging 27.6 points, 18.1 rebounds, and 6.6 blocks per game in his senior year while leading his team to the Tennessee state quarterfinals. Wright also earned a spot on McDonald’s prestigious All American team and was often viewed as a top 20 player in his class.

 
Roundball Rant: Thabeet, Curry & Duke E-mail

By Matthew Maurer

All of a sudden Hasheem Thabeet is ranked a top 10 pick by virtually every mock draft service and no one disagrees. But what was up when these mock draft providers proclaimed that Thabeet was virtually garbage after he contemplated coming out for the draft both as a freshmen and sophomore? The short term memory these so called experts amazes me. What changed guys? Either you're a poor judge of real talent or you just missed the boat. I think it's a little bit of both. Now these so-called experts should do themselves a favor - delete your past Thabeet bashing articles before you proclaim to have any further knowledge of his game.

 

A week and a half ago Loyola (MD) coach Jimmy Patsos decided to do something no real coach would. He abandoned attempts to win a game and instead focused on freezing Davidson's NBA bound player, Stephen Curry. It obviously wasn't a plan to simply limit Curry since Patsos kept two players on him the entire game regardless of how open his teammates were. And although Curry didn't score a point as he watched his wide-open teammates destroy the poorly coached team Loyola by 30 points, Patsos still felt the urge to gloat in the post game interview about how he kept Curry under wraps. What a bum. This guy doesn't deserve to coach anywhere in Division I, II, III or NAIA. Let's face it, he knew they wouldn't win so he went for the win within the loss. The University of Loyola needs to can this joker. Patsos may have the prized coaching pedigree but he lacks major leadership, integrity, intelligence, and the courage to compete. Patos was a sore loser before the game even started.

After losing big-time recruit Kenny Boynton, Duke has chosen to try its hand at the nation's top prospect, John Wall. Duke's recruitment of Wall has left some Blue Devils fans scratching their heads, especially with the somewhat negative perception that Wall is not the best of students. Regardless of what Mike Kryzewski proclaims, I can read the real story between the lines. Duke is falling short athletically compared to their rival 8 miles down the road in Chapel Hill. A Duke staff member is quoted as saying they "were pleasantly surprised by his transcripts". Translation? "Man, we thought he was dumb but he's not". In my eyes Duke is slowly starting to shed its recruiting morals to keep up with its intense UNC rival who has reloaded once again with the nation's number one recruiting class.

Lastly, say a prayer of hope and recovery for former Wake Forest star and NBA veteran Rodney Rogers. Rogers was involved in a terrible ATV accident several days ago while riding in the woods. His unfortunate fall from the ATV led to his current state of paralysis from the shoulders down. The 12-year former pro was transferred to Sheppard Center in Atlanta for rehabilitation on his spinal injury.

 
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