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Stay Connected - Looking Toward the Lottery

Three-for-All

April 26, 2010

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J.—The season of struggle has given way to an offseason of optimism, and it begins by Looking Toward the Lottery. During the next few weeks, NJNets.com will take you through the process with our ongoing series. Stay tuned for more!


Three-for-All
Since the lottery began in 1985, when the Knicks won the right to select clear No. 1 pick Patrick Ewing, teams have had to be open to the possibility they might not be drafting in order of finish. But that doesn’t mean good value will cease to be available for anyone who drops down. With the Nets guaranteed to pick at least fourth, we’ll take a historical swing through each of the team’s potential draft positions to see what could be.

Here’s a look at five – okay, six – No. 3 picks who went on to stand out after standing next to David Stern on draft day:

1. Carmelo Anthony (2003, Denver Nuggets)

Carmelo Anthony

Melo is only seven seasons into his NBA career, but if he remains healthy – something that undermined the outstanding early careers of two fellow No. 3’s – he should retire as one of the most potent scorers in league history. With 12,000 points to his name by age 25, Anthony’s 24.7 PPG ranks among the league’s top-20 all-time. He’s already earned three All-NBA 3rd team honors, and figures to improve from there.

Career Stats
G GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% SPG RPG APG PPG
514 514 36.5 0.459 0.308 0.801 1.4 6.2 3.1 24.7
Notes

7 seasons
3 All-Star Games (2007-08, 2010)
All-NBA (3rd team, 2006-07, 2009)
All-Rookie (1st team, 2003)
5 Times Top-10 PPG
Never missed playoffs

2. Grant Hill (1994, Detroit Pistons)

Grant Hill

Had injuries not decimated his career, it’s likely Hill would top this list. The closest of any player to achieving “Next Jordan” status in the years following MJ’s first and second retirements, Hill ripped off 20-9-6 lines in his second and third seasons, following those with a pair of 21-7-6 campaigns and peaking with 25.8 PPG, 6.6 RPG and 5.2 APG in 1999-2000. He joined Tracy McGrady in signing with the Magic, but played 65 games only twice in six years before leaving for Phoenix, where he has reinvented himself as a durable role player for the Suns, playing in 233 of 246 games during his three seasons (and counting!) there.

Career Stats
G GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% SPG RPG APG PPG
868 846 35.2 0.486 0.303 0.767 1.3 6.5 4.5 17.8
Notes

15 seasons
Co-Rookie of the Year (1995)
7 All-Star Games (1995-98, 2000-01, ’05)
All-NBA (1st team, 1997; 2nd, 1996, ’98-2000)
All-Rookie (1st team, 1995)
5 consecutive years with at least 20 PPG, 6 RPG and 5 APG, including 25.8, 6.6 and 5.2 in 1999-2000.

3. Chauncey Billups (1997, Boston Celtics)

Chauncey Billups

He might have taken a while (six years) and a few stops (five teams) to find lasting NBA success, but there’s no discounting that Chauncey Billups has earned his place among the game’s elite point guards. “Mr. Big Shot” fueled the Pistons ascension to Eastern Conference contender, beginning a streak of seven straight trips to the Conference Finals in 2003, one he extended even after being traded back to his hometown of Denver early last season. He’s made three All-NBA teams, and won the Finals MVP during Detroit’s upset of the Lakers in 2004. The accomplishments become more impressive as you explore them. Go on. Do it. You’ll thank yourself later.

Career Stats
G GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% SPG RPG APG PPG
910 816 32.3 0.416 0.388 0.892 1.0 3.0 5.6 15.4
Notes

13 seasons
1 NBA Championship (2004)
NBA Finals MVP (2004)
5 All-Star Games (2006-10)
All-NBA (2nd, 2006; 3rd, ’07, ’09)
All-Defensive (2nd, 2005-06)
Top-10 all-time in career three-pointers made and free-throw percentage.
Top-50 all-time in career assists.

4. Anfernee Hardaway (1993, Orlando Magic via Golden State)

Penny Hardaway

Career Stats
G GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG PPG
864 755 36.8 0.456 0.347 0.728 8.1 1.7 19.8
Notes

14 seasons
Rookie of the Year (1994)
All-NBA (1st team, 1995-96; 3rd, 1997)
All-Rookie (1st, 1994)
3 consecutive seasons of at least 20 PPG, 4 RPG and 7 APG.
3 times Top-6 in steals.

5. Pau Gasol (2001, Memphis Grizzlies via Atlanta)

Pau Gasol

Career Stats
G GS MPG FG% FT% BPG RPG APG PPG
649 643 35.8 0.521 0.743 1.7 9.0 3.2 18.8
Notes

9 seasons
1 NBA Championship (2009)
Rookie of the Year (2002)
3 All-Star Games (2006, ’09-10)
All-NBA (3rd, 2009)
All-Rookie (1st, 2002)
Top 60 all-time in career PPG, blocks, BPG.

Honorary Mention

Deron Williams (2005, Utah Jazz via Portland)

Deron Williams Stats
G GP MPG FG% 3P% RPG APG PPG
386 353 35.3 0.467 0.361 3.1 9.0 16.7
Notes

5 seasons
All-Star (2010)
All-NBA (2nd, 2008)
All-Rookie (1st, 2005)
4 times Top-3 assists.

Thanks to Marketing Intern Craig Manfra and Marketing Assistant Dave M. Brown for the assist!

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