Grizzlies select Wade Baldwin IV in First Round of 2016 NBA Draft
Memphis Grizzlies General Manager Chris Wallace announced that the Grizzlies selected Vanderbilt guard Wade Baldwin IV with the No. 17 overall pick in the first round and Fujian (China) center Wang Zhelin (Wong Juh-lean) with the No. 57 overall pick in the second round of the 2016 NBA Draft.
Baldwin (6-4, 202) averaged 14.1 points, 4.0 rebounds, 5.2 assists (third in the Southeastern Conference) and 1.21 steals in 30.4 minutes in 33 games (30 starts) last season as a sophomore at Vanderbilt University, setting the program’s sophomore record for total assists (172) and earning Second Team All-SEC honors. He shot 42.7 percent from the field (135-of-316 FG), 40.6 percent from three-point range (41-of-101 3P) and 79.9 percent from the free throw line (155-of-194 FT).
The 20-year-old finished his two-year collegiate career with averages of 11.6 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.32 steals in 29.6 minutes in 68 games (54 starts) for the Commodores, ranking second on the school’s all-time assists per game list behind Jan van Breda Kolff (5.4). He holds collegiate career shooting percentages of 43.1 percent from the field (234-of-543 FG), 43.9 percent from three-point range (84-of-199 3P) and 80.2 percent from the free throw line (240-of-300 FT). The Belle Mead, N.J. native was recognized on the SEC All-Freshman Team after leading the conference’s first-year players in assists per game (4.4) and steals per game (1.43).
A high school teammate of Minnesota Timberwolves forward and 2015-16 NBA Rookie of the Year Karl-Anthony Towns at St. Joseph High School in Metuchen, N.J., Baldwin hails from the same school as former NBA lottery picks Jay Williams and Andrew Bynum.
Wang (7-0, 220) first made a name for himself on the global basketball scene in 2012 as part of the World Select Team that defeated the United States Junior National Select Team, 84-75, in the Nike Hoop Summit. Playing alongside Andrew Wiggins, Dario Saric and Anthony Bennett, Wang registered 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting to go with eight rebounds in the victory. He made his pro debut in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) the following season and holds career averages of 20.8 points, 11.5 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 36.2 minutes in 111 games (104 starts) over four years (2012-16) with Fujian in the CBA.
The 22-year-old has represented China in FIBA competition at the youth level in the 2010 U17 Worlds and the 2012 U19 Worlds and also has played with China’s senior men’s national team in the FIBA Asia Championship in 2013 and 2015.
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