NBA Draft Notes

NBA Draft Starts New Help Plan

May 06, 1965

New York -- San Francisco and New York reap the first benefits of the National basketball Association’s new help-the-poor plan today when the pro league stages its annual player draft.

The two divisional tail-enders the Warriors in the West and the Knicks in the East each will get two of the first four selections. If San Francisco wins the coin toss, it will take Nos. 1 and 3 on the first round and New York Nos. 2 and 4.

Warriors Worst

If the flip goes to New York. It wake 1 and 4-since its record was than San Francisco’s - and the Warriors Nos. 2 and 3.

After San Francisco and New York, teams will pick according to won-lost records, in inverse order of percentage, Detroit is third, followed by Baltimore, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Cincinnati, Los Angeles and Boston.

Source: Associated Press,

Chicago Bulls Become 10th Team in NBA

January 28, 1966

Chicago -- The Chicago Bulls, who snorted up $1.6 million to become the National Basketball Association’s 10th member next year, obviously will open as a starless outfit.

The Bulls, scheduled to play in the stockyards-centered International Amphitheatre, must start with a collection of 18 secondary NBA players and the 10th, 13th and 14th picks as their top three choices in the May NBA Draft.

The new Chicago entry formally was certified by the NBA here Thursday.

The Bulls, backed by a five man syndicate headed by Dick Klein former Northwestern University cage star can’t possibly have a shot at such a sure-fire gate attraction as All-America Cassie Russell of Michigan.

Source: Associated Press,

Bargain Day for Lakers

April 08, 1969

Willie McCarter of Drake, Rick Robertson of Cincinnati and Dick Garrett of Southern Illinois were the Lakers’ selections in the annual NBA player draft’s first two rounds.

Roberson was the Lakers’ bonus pick. He was selected at the conclusion of the first round as the league indemnified Los Angles for its loss in the Rudy LaRusso transaction two years ago. LaRusso, Now with San Francisco but then with the Lakers was involved in a trade between Los Angeles, Baltimore and Detroit but he refused to report to Detroit.

Source: Associated Press, The Los Angeles Times

NBA Draft Slated for Monday

March 26,1961

St. Louis – – National Basketball Association club owners gather her Monday for their annual player draft, but pickings are slim indeed.

“This is one of the leanest years I can remember,” said Ben Kerber, owner of the St. Louis Hawks and one of the shrewdest judges of basketball talent in the business.

“We’ve done more scouting this year than ever before and the good pro prospects just aren’t there.”

Chicago the NBA’s ninth and newest franchise, get the first choice and is expected to select Walt Bellamy, Indiana’s fine 6-foot-11 center from New Bern, N.C. After Chicago, the draft order is New York, Cincinnati, Detroit, Los Angeles, Syracuse, Philadelphia, St. Louis and Boston based on won-lost records during the regular season.

The new club also get the first five picks of the second round plus the last one (No. 23). Chicago draft ninth in succeeding rounds, with the Knickerbockers picking first.

Source: Associated Press


Chicago Picks Walt Bellamy in NBA Draft

 March 28,1961

St. Louis – The field of senior college talent chiefly in super-tall players was supposed to be leanest in years at the annual National Basketball Association draft, but most coaches and owners came away smiling.

Indiana’s 6-foot-11 Olympic player, Walt Bellamy, was the No. 1 choice, and St. Bonaventure’s 6-foot-5 Tom Stith, a tremendous offensive player, was the second choice, as expected.

Then the NBA owners started reaching into the services, the amateur ranks and the Eastern League, for some talented players who won’t be under the pressure of their press clippings when they try to crack the NBA next season. Only 12 rookies made it this season.

It was obvious these “sleeper” picks were bringing the smiles Monday. Chicago the NBA’s ninth and newest club, chose Bellamy and was given the first five choices plus the last one in the second round. Coach Jim Pollard seemed pleased over his picks four of them 6-6 or over.

Cleveland Owner Ted Stepien Sells Franchise

May 09, 1983

Illinois -- Former Cleveland owner Ted Stepien who acquired the Cavaliers in 1980 has sold the franchise to Gordon and George Gund.

Stepien was viewed by many NBA insiders as a dismal owner whose moves brought raised eyebrows and awful results on the basketball court. One of his most noticeable actions was his constant trading of several years worth of draft picks for what many would call substandard talent. Seeing that his actions were crippling the franchise's future, the NBA passed a rule that no NBA team can trade away first round picks in consecutive years.

With the team’s attendance down to an average of nearly 4,000 a game, the vast money the franchise was losing and Stepien's threat to move the team to Toronto, the league forced Stepien's hand into selling the team. In came local brothers Gordon and George Gund who bought the fledging franchise for 20 million. NBA Owners devised a plan to recoup the Cavaliers first round draft picks for the next four years. In return the Gund Brothers paid an undisclosed amount to recover the first round choices the previous ownership had traded away.

Sources: New York Times,

76ers Get Bonus Pick In NBA-Brisker Squabble

April 19, 1973

New York -- The John Brisker affair is settled, with the struggling Philadelphia 76ers getting some much needed draft choices and Walter Kennedy, commissioner of the National Basketball Association, getting the backing of his Board of Governors.

The Brisker matter involving Philadelphia and Seattle was settled Wednesday night following a nine-hour meeting, which because of its length caused the second postponement of the NBA's college draft. The draft originally was set for last Monday, then today and now will be held next Tuesday. The American Basketball Association, which says it wants to draft after the NBA does, is still scheduled officially to have its selection session on Friday, but is expected to change the date today. The ABA draft fist was set for last Tuesday. 

When the NBA draft is held, Philadelphia, which had the worst record in the league this past season, will not only have the first pick of the first round but also will have a bonus pick which will be made after the 17 regular first round selections. The board also ruled that the signing of Brisker will cost Seattle $10,000 and its second-round choices in the year's and in the 1974 draft, which will go to Philadelphia.

The special session of the 17-member board took place after a court had overturned Kennedy's original ruling in the matter. Brisker became the NBA property of Philadelphia in 1969 in a supplemental draft but he signed with Pittsburgh of the ABA. When the Pittsburgh franchise disbanded last year, Brisker signed with Seattle. Kennedy then ruled that Seattle could keep Brisker but must pay a $10,000 fine and give its first-round draft choice to Philadelphia.

But Seattle owner Sam Shulman went to court and U.S. Judge John H. Tenney ruled that Kennedy had usurped the authority of the NBA's Board of Governors and was "guilty of misconduct" because he failed to hold a hearing or consult the board before making his decision. Kennedy then called the special meeting of the board and got its backing basically.

Sources: Associated Press


NBA Punishes Timberwolves for Secret Deal with Smith

October 25, 2000

NEW YORK -- The National Basketball Association today announced that Commissioner David Stern has taken the following actions based upon an arbitrator's ruling on Monday that the Minnesota Timberwolves, Joe Smith, and agent Eric Fleisher entered into a secret agreement in violation of the NBA's salary cap rules:

  • directed the forfeiture of Minnesota's own first-round draft picks in the 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 NBA Drafts;
  • fined the team $3.5 million; and
  • voided the player contract between Smith and the Timberwolves for the 2000-01 season, along with all contracts previously entered into by Smith and the team.

In addition to these penalties, the Collective Bargaining Agreement also authorizes the Commissioner to suspend team personnel who were involved in the making of the secret agreement. Those suspensions will be determined after subsequent proceedings before the arbitrator.

The NBA has also requested that, as required by the CBA, the Players Association impose appropriate discipline on Mr. Fleisher for his violation of the salary cap rules.

On December 9, 2000

MINNESOTA -- Minnesota Timberwolves vice president of basketball operations Kevin McHale agreed to take a leave of absence until July 31. Owner Glen Taylor agreed to take a leave of absence until July 31. Because of their cooperation in doing this without going through arbitration the NBA agreed to restore their 2003 first round draft pick.

December 28, 2003

NEW YORK-- The NBA announced today that it has restored the Minnesota Timberwolves first round pick in the 2005 NBA Draft. This pick had been forfeited by the Timberwolves in December 2000 in connection with the salary cap circumvention case involving the Timberwolves and Joe Smith.

"In light of the other penalties that have been imposed on the Timberwolves, and the team's conduct since the Smith matter concluded," said NBA Commissioner David Stern, 'we feel it is appropriate to restore the Timberwolves first round pick in 2005."

As a result of the Smith case, the Timberwolves will have forfeited their first round picks in the 2001, 2002and 2004 NBA Drafts, and paid a fine to the league of $3.5 million.