The Phoenix Suns tonight selected University of Kentucky guard Devin Booker with their first-round pick and the 13th overall in the 2015 NBA Draft.
Booker, widely considered to be the best three-point shooter in this year’s draft, earned Southeastern Conference (SEC) Sixth Man of the Year, Second Team All-SEC and All-SEC Freshman Team honors following his one season at Kentucky in 2014-15. The 6-6, 206-pound sharpshooter averaged 10.0 points for the Wildcats and displayed his fluid shooting stroke, connecting on 47.0 percent of his field goals, 41.1 percent of his three-pointers and 82.8 percent of his free throws.
A mature 18-year-old possessing a high basketball IQ, Booker helped the Wildcats to a 38-1 record this past season with the 38 wins tying for the most in NCAA history as Kentucky also won the SEC regular-season and tournament titles on its way to becoming the first undefeated team to reach the Final Four since UNLV in 1991. Booker ranked second on the Wildcats with 20 double-digit scoring games and led the conference by earning SEC Freshman of the Week honors on five occasions.
Booker, a native of Grand Rapids, Mich., was named a 2014 McDonald’s All-American after averaging 30.9 points as a senior at Moss Point High School in Moss Point, Miss. Booker’s father, Melvin, played in 32 NBA games with the Houston Rockets, Denver Nuggets and Golden State Warriors over the 1995-96 and 1996-97 seasons, following a distinguished collegiate career at the University of Missouri where he earned Consensus Second Team All-America honors in 1994.
An early entry candidate, Booker joins fellow former Kentucky guards Eric Bledsoe, Archie Goodwin and Brandon Knight on the Suns’ roster. Booker is also the fourth Kentucky player to be drafted by the Suns and is the highest pick of the quartet that also includes Rajon Rondo (21st in 2006), Kyle Macy (22nd in 1979) and Jimmy D. Connor (36th in 1975). The Suns have now selected an early entry candidate 24 times, including each of the last eight drafts and in 18 of the last 22.