Draft Picks from NBA D-League Hairston and Antetokounmpo Meet in Vegas

Antetokounmpo's Knicks rolled past Hairston's Hornets, 95-72, during Day 4 of Summer League on Monday.

LAS VEGAS -- PJ Hairston and Thanasis Antetokounmpo first met on February 21, 2014 in Newark, Delaware, where the Delaware 87ers beat the Texas Legends 121-117. Hairston, in between a 21-point outing in Erie, Pa., and a 16-point outing in Canton, Ohio, scored 12 points on 2-for-6 shooting. Antetokounmpo scored 17 in 27 minutes.

It was an ordinary game during the grueling NBA D-League season.

Nearly months later, so much had changed for the two players who took drastically different paths to the NBA, but will forever be tied as the first two NBA D-League players to be selected in the same NBA Draft.

Hairston wore the jersey of his hometown Charlotte Hornets, a first-round pick using the Summer League as a tune-up to try to contribute immediately. He's the gifted athlete who others have expected to make it here since he was in middle school, and he showcased his immense natural talent in scoring 18 points.

Antetokounmpo came out like a wind-up toy, as he always does, only this time he donned the Knicks' blue and orange, and this time every ounce of energy he exhausted went toward his mission of cracking the Knicks' roster. He's one of the few prospects in Las Vegas who truly can't believe how far he's come, from poverty in Greece to the NBA.

Both have credited the NBA D-League with getting them there.

It says a lot," Antetokounmpo said postgame. "It says that every year, itís getting better, the levelís getting higher."