Kings Select Ben McLemore in First Round
SACRAMENTO ---- The Sacramento Kings tonight (Thursday, June 27th) selected University of Kansas' Ben McLemore in the first round (7th overall) and University of Detroit Mercy's Ray McCallum in the second round (36th overall) of the 2013 NBA Draft.
"We are very pleased to have just completed our first draft for the new-era Kings," said Kings Majority Owner Vivek Ranadivé. "Ben McLemore was our dream choice from the get-go. I did say that when we got the No. 7 pick that seven was my lucky number. So we felt seven was our lucky number and sure enough, we got the guy that we all were dreaming about."
"It was a special night – Ben is a gifted player," said Kings General Manager Pete D'Alessandro. "He is someone our staff spent hours watching, evaluating and debating. And with the second-round pick, Ray McCallum is just one of the classiest young men you'll ever meet and a heck of a player."
An early entry candidate, the 6-5, 195-pound McLemore averaged 15.9 points (.495 FG%, .420 3pt%, .870 FT%), 5.2 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.0 steals, and 32.2 minutes per game in 37 appearances for the Jayhawks. McLemore set the KU freshman record in scoring (3rd in the Big 12) and free throw percentage. He was named to the Second Team All-America by the AP, NABC, and USBWA in 2013. A three-time Big 12 Rookie of the Week and one-time league player of the week, the standout guard became only the second Jayhawk in the 17-year history of the Big 12 to win both awards in the same season. He had 11 games of 20 points or more, including three 30-point performances. His 36 points against West Virginia broke the Kansas freshman single-game scoring record and his three 30-point efforts also set a KU freshman single-season mark.
McLemore becomes only the third player to be selected out of Kansas by the Kings in the Sacramento era, joining Ryan Robertson (second round, 45th overall, 1999) and Thomas Robinson (first round, 5th overall, 2012). In franchise history, McLemore is the fourth player from Kansas to ever be selected by the Kings (Carl Henry, 4th round, 1984).
McCallum, also an early entry candidate, averaged 15.9 points (.465 FG%, .290 3pt%, .723 FT%), 4.8 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.7 steals, and 34.5 minutes per game in 102 career games in three seasons (2010-11 – 2012-13) for the University of Detroit Mercy. The 6-3, 190-pound guard was a three-time All-Horizon selection, earning league Player of the Year honors in 2013 after averaging a career-best 18.7 points (.491 FG%, .323 3pt%, .723 FT%), a career-high 5.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 1.9 steals, and 36.6 minutes per game in 33 contests. McCallum completed his career at Detroit ranking eighth in scoring (1,618 points), fourth in steals (175), and seventh in assists (451) all-time in school history.
McCallum becomes the first University of Detroit Mercy player to be drafted by the Kings in the Sacramento era.