D-League Expansion Draft: A Deeper Look

D-League Expansion Draft: A Deeper Look
Sep 06, 2007, 01:40 pm
The D-League held their expansion draft yesterday, allowing the new teams a chance at acquiring the rights to players who played in the D-League last season. The existing franchises were allowed to protect the rights to 10 players from the previous season, and the rights to the players from the inactive teams were also available. Last season, each team was allowed to bring back 4 players they had rights to, either via the previous season or expansion draft. The league office still hasn’t decided how many players the teams will be allowed to bring back this year.

When viewing the results, keep in mind that the draft would look much different had the selections been based solely on the capability of the player. The D-League teams had to communicate with the players to determine their plans for this season and future marketability in Europe in order to gauge their chances at playing in the NBDL this year and for how long. A guy like Desmon Farmer or Roger Powell could easily go in the first round of a draft like this, but their current and future plans caused both players to drop into the middle rounds.

Here’s a closer look at the draft results, and the likelihood of each selection playing in the D-League this season.

Rio Grande Valley Vipers:

1. JR Pinnock
2. Trent Strickland
3. Alfred Neale
4. Terrance Thomas
5. Clay Tucker
6. Nigel Dixon
7. Desmon Farmer
8. John Gilchrist
9. Joe Dabbert
10. Milone Clark

The new team from Texas selected Pinnock first overall, and probably did so because he has yet to sign with a team overseas. If he indeed chooses to play in the D-League this season, the Vipers will have landed themselves a quality starter with the first overall pick. Trent Strickland and Alfred Neale also have their options open for this season. The Vipers’ fourth round pick Terrance Thomas had a solid D-League season last year followed by a good summer league performance, but he has already signed with the Artland Dragons in Germany for this season. The same goes for 5th round selection Clay Tucker, who was one of the top scorers in the D-League last season. The 6’3” shooting guard has signed to play with Teramo in the Italian league. 8th round selection John Gilchrist has signed to play in Latvia with Ventspils as well. Desmon Farmer still hasn’t signed overseas, and could be a top shooting guard for the Vipers should he sign in the D-League again.

Fort Wayne Mad Ants:

1. Jeremy Richardson
2. Anthony Roberson
3. Olu Famutimi
4. Antonio Meeking
5. Mike Benton
6. Badou Gaye
7. Tyrone Sally
8. Chad Bell
9. Walker Russell Jr.
10. Armein Kirkland

The Mad Ants grabbed the best player available in the expansion draft with the second selection overall, grabbing guard Jeremy Richardson, who received 3 call-ups during the course of the 2006-2007 season. Richardson currently has a partially guaranteed contract with the Miami Heat, worth $70,000 for training camp increasing to $195,000 if he makes the opening day roster. If he ends up in the D-League, this was a great pick for the team from Indiana, but it is far from a lock to happen at this point. Second round selection Anthony Roberson currently remains unsigned, but should have no trouble finding a good salary overseas. Olu Famutimi has already signed to play in Poland for this season, after spending the last two years with the Arkansas Rimrockers. The rest of the players drafted by the Mad Ants remain free agents, and players like Tyrone Sally, Chad Bell, Walker Russell Jr., and Badou Gaye could all turn into quality rotation players for them this season.

Utah Flash

1. Brian Jackson
2. James Lang
3. Roger Powell
4. Curtis Stinson
5. Kevin Burleson
6. Chris Copeland
7. Corey Santee
8. Cezary Trybanski
9. Kevin Johnson
10. Jeff Hagen

With their first pick, the Flash grabbed a solid big man who could start on most D-League teams in Brian Jackson. In the second round, the team from Utah continued by grabbing another free agent big in James Lang, who played much of last season with the Washington Wizards. Roger Powell has already signed to play in Italy this season, inking a deal with Teramo. Curtis Stinson will be playing with Kolossos Rodou in Greece, and Kevin Burleson will play the upcoming season with Mersin in Turkey. Chris Copeland recently signed to play in the Spanish LEB Gold League, and Corey Santee may ink a deal overseas as early as this week. Peristeri in Greece has signed Trybanski for this season, but Kevin Johnson and Jeff Hagen both remain unsigned, and are solid D-League bench players.

Iowa Energy

1. Will Conroy
2. Jackie Manuel
3. Anthony Terrell
4. Brandon Robinson
5. Denham Brown
6. Matt Haryasz
7. Luke Whitehead
8. Deji Akindele
9. DeAnthony Bowden
10. Luke Schenscher

The Energy decided to select point guard Will Conroy with their first round selection, though the guard has already opted to sign with top Italian team Virtus Bologna. Second round selection Jackie Manuel has a contract with the Boston Celtics right now though he may be a long shot to make the opening day roster. Third round selection Anthony Terrell remains a free agent and could be a very solid power forward for the energy. Brandon Robinson also has 2 years of D-League experience, and uses his athleticism to make a strong impact in the paint. He will be attending training camp with the Sacramento Kings. Denham Brown has a contract with Cantu in Italy for this season, while big man Matt Haryasz will be playing in Italy as well with Napoli. DejI Akindele is still searching for a job overseas, but his former teammate Luke Schenscher has signed to play with Bamberg in Germany for this season.

Recent articles

Twitter @DraftExpress

DraftExpress Shop