Friday, June 29, 2012

Nearby Nets draft Tyshawn Taylor after second-round slide


Tyshawn Taylor had heard all sorts of things from people once his name wasn’t called in the first round of Thursday’s NBA draft.

So it came as a relief when he was finally taken with the 41st pick by the Portland Trail Blazers, who traded his rights to the Brooklyn Nets.

“I was just staying ready, being alert, and just being happy, looking forward to the opportunity,” Taylor said. “I knew that any team that was going to take me was going to want to play me right away.”

Taylor was sitting on steps inside the Room 84 nightclub in Hoboken, N.J., shaking his head in disgust at the previous selection when he learned that he had been picked at No. 41.

An report earlier in the day had even indicated that the Chicago Bulls were likely to take him with pick No. 29.

“It’s weird, because I thought to myself at the beginning of the draft that I probably would get drafted by a team that I didn’t work out for. And that’s exactly the case with Brooklyn,” Taylor said. “I met with them at Chicago. I sat down and spoke to their GM (Billy King), but of course, I don’t think they figured I would be there when they picked. So, the fact that they picked me is great.”

The selection means that Taylor will be playing about 10 miles from his hometown of Hoboken.

“It’s not that far,” Taylor said. “It’s over one of those bridges over there.”

KU coach Bill Self was asked what advice he’d give to Taylor, who started all four years as a Jayhawk.

“Be who he is, and don’t forget who he is. And don’t get caught up in thinking he’s done anything, because he hasn’t yet,” Self said. “And just to work. ... His athletic ability and his talent will win out over time, because all he has to do is just be who he is and just do what he knows he can do.

“Don’t try to be great or do anything exceptional. Just go be who you are. Because who he is is plenty good enough to make that team.”

Taylor called the opportunity to go to the Nets “a blessing.”

“I feel like I have the opportunity anyway because of what I can bring for a team. I can defend,” Taylor said. “Being a four-year player at a university like Kansas, I think, gives me a step up in competition of coming into the league ready — ready to play right now.”

Brooklyn general manager King said the Nets had targeted Taylor for a while before buying the pick from Portland.

“We had him on our board pretty high,” King told the Associated Press. “We were trying to get a young point guard that we could groom. We liked his pedigree and his ability to play in big games. Once we started to slide, we made the move to get him. We liked his overall play as a point guard and we think his best basketball is ahead of him. We like his decision making and his size. He knows what it takes to be successful.

“He’s played with a lot of talented players in the past and that makes you a better player.”

Self admitted to being proud when both Taylor and Thomas Robinson were drafted Thursday because of both players’ circumstances.

Both, he said, had persevered through rough times.

“Tyshawn goes from being the most criticized guy that I’ve coached — period — to now, ‘How in the world can we play without him?’ and every fan feels the same way,” Self said. “Thomas basically having no one in his life and having to be a man on his own and that kind of stuff to maturing and being an unbelievable ambassador for our university. It’s really cool how both of them handled their situations.”

Self said both players ended up in good locations.

“I know what drives them both: It drives them nuts to think that somebody thinks that somebody’s better than them,” Self said. “So I don’t think the draft could have gone much better for either one of them from a script standpoint.”


RJ King 8 years, 8 months ago

"We liked his pedigree and his ability to play in big games" = Kansas basketball

As usual Self is right on point when assessing both personalities and situations. Ty dropped a little because several shooters were picked ahead of him. I am so pulling for him to use his NBA athleticism and massive desire to grow, and eventually shine.

Ty allowed us to see into his heart. In spite of his critics, and maybe because of his errors, I find him one of the most likeable KU players ever.

Jeff Kilgore 8 years, 8 months ago

"most likeable KU players ever." Thanks for all of us who agree.

RockChalk26 8 years, 8 months ago

Extremely happy for TT. I couldn't think of a better spot for him start his NBA career.

jaybate 8 years, 8 months ago

Everyone wants length on the perimeter in college and pro to shoot and guard the trey.

Athleticism and competitive greatness come second and third.

NBA players have bought into this mind set, too.

A-holes like Lebron and Wade don't get that Chalmers is a great player--the kind that wins rings--and they are still just long athletic freaks that need Chalmers to win.

If I were Self, I would think about going to the pros now. He could win a ring in three years, maybe only two, just by knowing how to fill out a roster after the three stars better than anyone else. Almost no one in the NBA really understands the game now. Riley gets it. Ainge and Rivers get it. The guys in OKC are listening to Self. Poppovich does. But after that it's like a confederacy of dunces running teams.

John Stockton, Jason Kidd and Steve Nash were once recognized for their exceptional quickness and skill. Kidd would now be a second rounder and Stockton and Nash might not even be drafted.

6-2 and 6-3 guards are mostly day old bread on draft day, even if they can shoot the rock from the moon, as Mario Chalmers could.

Lillard, Teague and Beale got the call ahead of Taylor. Taylor is faster and a better defender than all of them. He carried his team as first, or second scoring option. He played injured. He proved he has a trey.

He should do well in th

yates33333 8 years, 8 months ago

jb. bite your tongue on the advice to Self.

Jeremy Wilhelm 8 years, 8 months ago

The only part I don't agree with is this notion about how the Heat stars view Mario - they have as much said the exact opposite of what you just stated above. Can't find the source video now, but both have called Mario a winner and commended him for having the balls to take the clutch shot and to believe in himself 100%. They may treat him like a little brother, but I don't think that means they don't respect his contributions.

Sam Constance 8 years, 8 months ago

That's lip service BS.

You don't pull the drill sergeant move on a player you respect. There's a reason that James/Wade/Bosh don't yell at each OTHER like Bosh did to Chalmers in the Finals.

Jeremy Wilhelm 8 years, 7 months ago

They DO yell at each other like that. Game five of the finals against the Mavs... wade read Lebron the riot act because Lebron had disappeared. I guess we see what we expect to see sometimes, so maybe I'm wrong here, but I think you're being uncharitable in your assessment.

Jeff Kilgore 8 years, 8 months ago

I agree with your analysis of Self. The aholes comment is really off base. Chalmers is a very good, not great player. There are times when his carelessness would be very annoying.

I love SUPER Mario as much as the next KU fan. The NBA is simply a game for the gods and Chalmers is a demigod.

Michael Pannacciulli 8 years, 8 months ago

All good points about TT jaybate. I think he landed in a great spot for a number of reasons. Lets hope he keeps good company and channels his great highscool and college coaches wisdom. I can't wait personally to go across town to the Barclays Center and catch him in the black and white uni shredding opposing defenses!

yates33333 8 years, 8 months ago

I think, at least I hope, the Nets will find what a great pick they've made. He was a late bloomer although he started as a freshman. He isn't a Rose, no bull, but he is at least a Nettle, i.e., he is rather pretty and can sting you.

KGphoto 8 years, 8 months ago

Taylor landed in the coolest, trendiest area of NY. Just got back and met with lots of people living there and working in the Chelsea area. It's a fun young lifestyle. Lots of stuff going on there.

(BTW, got kicked off the set of some Stamos/Rappaport movie. Pretty hilarious actually, we didn't even know we were in the way. My wife's friend is screaming "Oh my gawd it's John Stamos". I'm thinking, "Cool, Michael Rappaport" both of us trying to get photos, but were shuffled down the street while those two guys and the extras waited. Finally they get the all clear and continue shooting. We went to Artichoke Bassille and laughed for awhile, eating the best pizza in the world.)

Anybody who hasn't visited Brooklyn lately, go check it out. And make sure to get over to Chelsea and hang out on the High Line too.

yovoy 8 years, 8 months ago

I'm with you on "ignoring" Stamos and thinking Rapaport is a much cooler person to see. I mean, one of the 2 has a weak body of work, and the other has a 'varied' body of work (Rapaport). I guess many would see it the complete opposite way. I don't believe either one of them is that great of an actor, but MR didn't make a show for kids - okay he has - but Stamos wasn't in 'True Romance' nor did he direct a film about A Tribe Called Quest.

REHawk 8 years, 8 months ago

Good luck, Tyshawn. A tedious wait, esp. watching a batch of curs prance ahead of you; but I think you might have landed in the best possible slot. Go forth like Mario to show the NBA evaluators what's what! You've a bundle to prove...and the skills with which to do it. The Nets have stolen some ready talent.

buckleyhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

It's semantics, the way the draft works in the NBA. The deal for the pick can't be finalized until it's cleared by the NBA office, which happens after the draft. Pretty dumb, but the way it works -- I guess to prevent really bad deals from happening.

championhawks 8 years, 8 months ago

"We like his decision making and his size"

I love TT and hope that he succeeds in Brooklyn and sticks in the NBA for awhile, but I don't think I have heard anyone say that they like his decision making!

Congrats TT and I will be sure to head across the river to catch some Nets games!

Tony Bandle 8 years, 8 months ago

Uh a nightclub watching the draft??

With the way his career and off court issues started the first two years, I think he did a great job to just get drafted.

By the way, if Kansas had upset Kentucky in the title game, my guess would be that TRob would have been #2 and Tyshawn would have been a first rounder.

machinegun 8 years, 8 months ago

WTG Tyshawn! A man with the heart of a lion! Just ask Mizzou fan who is still crying in his beer, "our guy never touched Tyshawn and they called a foul". Ha Ha!

Jack Wilson 8 years, 8 months ago

Billy King on TT: “We had him on our board pretty high,” King told the Associated Press. “We were trying to get a young point guard that we could groom. We liked his pedigree and his ability to play in big games. Once we started to slide, we made the move to get him. We liked his overall play as a point guard and we think his best basketball is ahead of him. We like his decision making and his size. He knows what it takes to be successful."

championshawk pointed this out, too.

Even the most ardent TT supporters have never, ever liked is "decision making." What is King smokin'? Actually, the only folks that have complimented his decision making have been KU opponents.

But everything else is good. TT is a great pick. Teague vs. Taylor. Did the Bulls make a mistake? I think Taylor is a 10-year pro, and an eventual starter. He has come a long, long way. Four years at KU will do that for you.

If I were to suggest one area of focus that will make TT even more dangerous .. look to be the distributor, not the scorer. But that was my suggestion multiple seasons ago.

Tony Bandle 8 years, 8 months ago

Also, if you have the ball and the lead with 5 seconds left...don't throw it away!!

RJ King 8 years, 8 months ago

Is it possible that TT just played too fast for the college game? Could playing with pro speed all around him turn a lot of his bad decisions into assists or points? Also, he was criticized for bringing the ball up too slow. Isn't that what they mostly do in the NBA? Just wondering how his game will translate.

How much of Taylor's mistakes came from other players not being ready (OK, maybe only a few). How many came from him driving into a crowd of defenders in the paint? Won't he have a little more room to fly in the NBA? Or will the extra size of the pros negate that aspect?

I think the fact that TT has played fast, and played alongside many of these rookies already will be a big asset. Damian Lillard may be the real deal (obviously a shooter), but he certainly wasn't able to do that at Weber State.

Jeff Kilgore 8 years, 8 months ago

Yes, I've always felt this way. In the NBA, the game will truly be more suited to his incredible athleticism. At least that's what I hope.

Steve Brown 8 years, 8 months ago

ditto had same thoughts draft night, Taylor in college at times overthinks and in NBA can just react. Talent may surprise some folks.

texashawk10 8 years, 8 months ago

Chicago was looking for a backup point guard, not someone who could be a starting in a couple of seasons. Teague is a better fit for Chicago because he's not likely to ever be a starter. Tyshawn meanwhile will have the opportunity to replace another Bill Self product in Derron Williams as the starting PG is Williams goes to Dallas.

Trey Hohman 8 years, 8 months ago

If Tyshawn had to go in 2nd round, he at least ended up in a great position to make an NBA roster. The Nets have only four players under contract right now.

yovoy 8 years, 8 months ago

Billy King was the captain of the '88 Duke team that D. Manning and Co. sent packing. Avery Johnson is the coach. These guys have been around some winning basketball organizations. I didn't realize that AJ was the coach there, but I feel much better about TT's prospects knowing he's being coached by a former guard that was UNDRAFTED out of college, and that he's being coached by a guy that hit the game-winner against the Knicks in '99 to give San Anto the Championship. I'm guessing that there were some calls going from BK Nets to San Anto to Larryville to 'check up' on what TT could bring to the table. So then, TT has been drafted by a team that wants to groom him, and he'll be coached by a man that knows what it's like to be undersold/unsold who is a former NBA champion point-guard.

Nets' talk about the draft and plans for TT:

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