Cavaliers make UNLV's Anthony Bennett the first Canadian taken with No. 1 pick in NBA draft

  • Article by: BRIAN MAHONEY , AP Basketball Writer
  • Updated: June 28, 2013 - 6:36 AM

NEW YORK — Anthony Bennett learned he would be making NBA draft history the same time as everyone else.

"When they said my name," Bennett said. "That's when I knew it happened. I had no idea before."

Who did?

The Cleveland Cavaliers surprisingly made Bennett the first Canadian No. 1 overall pick, and Nerlens Noel tumbled out of the top five and right into a trade Thursday night in an unsettled first round of the draft.

"It was chaotic from the first pick," Minnesota president Flip Saunders said. "When Bennett was taken off the board, that set the tone for the whole draft."

There were moves all night, all of them taking a back seat to one in the works for the team that calls Barclays Center home.

The Brooklyn Nets will acquire Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett from Boston in a blockbuster deal that was still developing as the draft neared its conclusion, according to a person with knowledge of the details.

"There was a lot of activity," said Nets general manager Billy King, who wouldn't comment on the trade. "As you guys will find out, there will be a lot of trades that are announced."

His can't be until July 10, after next season's salary cap is set.

As for the draft, it was as unpredictable as expected, capped by Hakeem Olajuwon coming on stage at the end of the first round to greet David Stern, dressed in the same tuxedo style he wore when Stern called his name to start the soon-to-be retired commissioner's first draft in 1984.

One of the favorites to be taken first Thursday night, Noel fell to No. 6, where the New Orleans Pelicans took him and then dealt his rights to the Philadelphia 76ers for a package headlined by All-Star guard Jrue Holiday, according to a person familiar with the details. That trade can't become official until July 10 because of salary cap concerns, according to another official with knowledge of the deal.

The Cavaliers started things by passing on centers Noel and Alex Len, who went to Phoenix at No. 5, in favor of Bennett, the UNLV freshman forward who starred for Canada's junior national teams and was the Mountain West Conference freshman of the year. Bennett led a record 12 international players who were taken in the first round.

"I'm just as surprised as anyone else," Bennett said.

There was suspense right until the end of the Cavs' 5-minute window to make their selection, either because they were unsure who they wanted or were trying to trade the pick. Most predictions had them taking one of the big men, with Noel largely considered the favorite for the No. 1 choice even after a torn ACL that ended his lone season at Kentucky in February.

"I thought everything was in the air, so I wasn't thinking I was the No. 1 pick," Noel said.

Stern, booed heavily for most of his final draft, added to the surprise of the moment by pausing slightly before announcing the Cavs' pick, their first at No. 1 since taking All-Star Kyrie Irving in 2011.

Orlando passed on both of the big men, too, going with Indiana swingman Victor Oladipo with the No. 2 pick. Washington took Otto Porter Jr. with the third pick, keeping the Georgetown star in town.

Ten years after the Cavaliers selected LeBron James to start a draft that included future NBA championship teammates Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in the top five, this one lacked star power and perhaps even the promise of stardom.

Bennett, Noel and Len are all coming off injuries and couldn't even work out for teams, but the Cavs decided Bennett's shoulder surgery wasn't enough cause for concern.

Len walked up to meet Stern and collect his orange Suns hat, then sat down near the stage to put on the walking boot he needs for the stress fracture of his left ankle that was discovered after Maryland's season.

Noel finally went to New Orleans with the next pick. He didn't seem upset at his fall down the draft board, hugging his mother and shaking hands with Kentucky coach John Calipari.

It was a good start to the night for the Hoosiers, with Cody Zeller going to the Charlotte Bobcats two places after Oladipo.

Kansas guard Ben McLemore, another player who was considered a potential top-three pick, also dropped, going seventh to Sacramento.

Headed by a lackluster class, the draft promised confusion and second-guessing, with no consensus No. 1 pick and little agreement among the order of the top five.

And with lesser-known names in the draft, veterans soaked up the spotlight in the hours leading up to it.

Yahoo Sports first reported that the Nets and Celtics were working on the trade that would complete the breakup of the Celtics' veteran core.

ESPN reported earlier Thursday that Dwight Howard was unlikely to return to the Los Angeles Lakers when he becomes a free agent next month.

The guys coming into the league were glad for the attention they did finally get once their names were called.

"It's like a weight vest you took off after running five miles," Oladipo said. "It's relaxing, man. But at the same time, you know it's just getting started."

National player of the year Trey Burke of Michigan also was traded, the Timberwolves sending his rights to Utah for the rights to Shabazz Muhammad and Gorgui Dieng, the 14th and 21st picks.

Lehigh's C.J. McCollum rounded out the top 10 by going to Portland.

Stern, retiring in February, seemed to play up the boos, which turned to cheers after every pick, fans perhaps as puzzled as some of the players at the names they were hearing.

"I was just kidding my agent because he didn't bail me out," Zeller said. "He didn't tell me. I didn't know until David Stern announced it. It's a crazy process not knowing, but I'm definitely excited that I ended up with the Bobcats."

Other players couldn't get too excited about their new addresses, because they changed quickly.

Stern was announcing deals by the middle of the first round and they kept coming after he called it a night and turned things over to Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver for the final 30 picks.

The flurry of trades wasn't surprising with so much uncertainty surrounding this class and so much hope in other areas. Teams such as Houston, Dallas and Atlanta already have an eye on Howard's future, needing to have necessary salary cap space to offer a maximum contract that could lure him away from Los Angeles.

The 2014 class — which could be topped by a second straight Canadian in incoming Kansas freshman Andrew Wiggins — will be higher regarded than this one, with James perhaps heading the available free agents to follow.

Local fans seemed pleased with their picks, cheering loudly when the Nets took Duke forward Mason Plumlee at No. 22 and the New York Knicks grabbed Michigan's Tim Hardaway Jr. two picks later.

Stern made his final pick to close the first round to cheers of "David! David!" before handing things off to Silver. Seven deals were official by the time Silver wrapped it up, with some, including the Noel trade, still being worked on even after the draft was finished.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Milwaukee 25 1st Qtr 0:59
Orlando 18
New York 27 1st Qtr 1:24
Indiana 18
Denver 7:00 PM
Memphis
Chicago 9:30 PM
LA Lakers
Montreal 0 1st Prd 5:14
NY Rangers 0
Winnipeg 1 1st Prd 6:47
Philadelphia 2
Boston 1 1st Prd 4:38
NY Islanders 0
Arizona 6:30 PM
Toronto
Dallas 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Detroit 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Columbus 6:30 PM
Florida
Nashville 7:00 PM
St. Louis
Minnesota 8:00 PM
Calgary
Buffalo 8:30 PM
Edmonton
Anaheim 9:00 PM
San Jose
DePaul 72 FINAL
Providence 83
Michigan State 60 2nd Half 10:33
Rutgers 36
Boston Univ 18 1st Half 9:01
Army 16
Fla Atlantic 21 1st Half 6:53
Charlotte 25
Youngstown St 12 1st Half 8:24
Detroit 18
East Tenn St 14 1st Half 7:08
Furman 14
Saint Louis 15 1st Half 7:32
George Mason 12
USC Upstate 13 1st Half 12:09
Jacksonville 6
High Point 20 1st Half 7:00
Liberty 15
Central Conn St 18 1st Half 3:38
Long Island 27
Western Ky 16 1st Half 7:56
Louisiana Tech 19
Dayton 26 1st Half 4:13
Massachusetts 32
Chattanooga 21 1st Half 6:35
Mercer 29
Wofford 15 1st Half 7:43
UNC Greensboro 16
Maryland 15 1st Half 6:26
Ohio State 19
FIU 17 1st Half 5:18
Old Dominion 25
Fair-Dickinson 21 1st Half 6:16
Robert Morris 29
Mount St Marys 24 1st Half 6:20
St Francis-NY 19
Bryant 26 1st Half 4:46
St Francis-PA 28
Northern Ky 13 1st Half 7:30
Stetson 25
Coll of Charleston 14 1st Half 6:05
Towson 22
Western Carolina 30 1st Half 7:18
Va Military 19
Sacred Heart 18 1st Half 8:02
Wagner 16
Lipscomb 19 1st Half 6:37
Fla Gulf Coast 29
Kennesaw St 16 1st Half 4:50
North Florida 39
Appalachian St 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
Holy Cross 6:30 PM
Loyola-Maryland
Eastern Ill 6:30 PM
UT Martin
Jacksonville St 7:00 PM
Belmont
Connecticut 7:00 PM
Cincinnati
Rider 7:00 PM
Saint Peters
SIU Edwardsville 7:00 PM
SE Missouri St
Marshall 7:00 PM
Southern Miss
Tenn Tech 7:00 PM
Tennessee St
Middle Tennessee 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Ill-Chicago 7:00 PM
Milwaukee
Weber State 7:00 PM
North Dakota
Denver 7:00 PM
North Dakota St
IUPU-Ft Wayne 7:00 PM
South Dakota
Louisiana 7:05 PM
South Alabama
Georgia State 7:15 PM
Texas-Arlington
Ark-Little Rock 7:30 PM
Arkansas State
ULM 7:30 PM
Troy
Portland 8:00 PM
Gonzaga
Kentucky 8:00 PM
Missouri
Eastern Ky 8:00 PM
Murray State
UAB 8:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Idaho State 8:00 PM
Northern Colorado
UMKC 8:00 PM
Grand Canyon
Chicago State 8:05 PM
Utah Valley U
Colorado 8:30 PM
USC
Cal Poly 9:00 PM
UC Irvine
Hawaii 9:00 PM
CS-Northridge
Pepperdine 9:00 PM
Pacific
Santa Clara 9:00 PM
San Diego
Utah 9:00 PM
UCLA
UC Santa Barbara 9:00 PM
UC Davis
Montana 9:05 PM
Portland State
Montana State 9:05 PM
Sacramento St
Long Beach State 9:30 PM
Cal State Fullerton
Loyola Marymount 9:30 PM
St Marys-CA
San Francisco 10:00 PM
BYU
California 10:00 PM
Washington St
Louisiana 47 FINAL
South Alabama 57
Saint Josephs 51 FINAL
Saint Louis 52
Appalachian St 77 FINAL
Georgia Southern 74
Niagara 58 FINAL
Saint Peters 65
Old Dominion 60 2nd Half 4:55
FIU 57
Southern Miss 61 2nd Half 4:31
Marshall 53
Georgia State 22 2nd Half 9:08
TX-Arlington 44
Ark-Little Rock 57 2nd Half 5:26
Arkansas State 65
ULM 20 2nd Half 16:44
Troy 49
Pittsburgh 23 2nd Half 16:40
(17) Duke 40
(6) Tennessee 19 1st Half 6:45
(10) Kentucky 15
(24) Oklahoma 26 1st Half 5:19
(14) Texas 21
Nebraska Omaha 12 1st Half 7:36
IUPU-Ft Wayne 21
UC-Riverside 20 1st Half 6:29
CS-Northridge 29
Army 21 1st Half 7:34
Boston U 10
New Orleans 11 1st Half 3:33
Nicholls 21
Charlotte 28 1st Half 5:10
Florida Atlantic 29
Towson 20 1st Half 1:25
Delaware 27
Hofstra 23 1st Half 7:39
Northeastern 16
New Hampshire 18 1st Half 4:58
Maine 29
Albany 28 1st Half 4:32
Vermont 18
Hartford 24 1st Half 4:49
Stony Brook 21
UNC-Wilmington 29 1st Half 3:00
William & Mary 26
Clemson 15 1st Half 7:42
Wake Forest 24
Alabama 13 1st Half 7:54
(1) South Carolina 27
(23) Syracuse 17 1st Half 7:51
(8) Louisville 11
Missouri 23 1st Half 7:00
Florida 22
Iona 23 1st Half 5:42
Fairfield 25
Manhattan 13 1st Half 3:59
Marist 33
NC State 25 1st Half 5:39
Virginia 25
(4) Notre Dame 19 1st Half 9:24
Virginia Tech 6
(22) Rutgers 15 1st Half 7:54
Purdue 13
(5) Maryland 32 1st Half 5:56
Michigan 22
Milwaukee 17 1st Half 4:23
Cleveland State 30
Wright State 39 1st Half 4:46
Oakland 31
Jacksonville 9 1st Half 9:11
USC Upstate 14
North Florida 15 1st Half 2:58
Kennesaw St 16
Stetson 14 1st Half 7:29
Northern Ky 29
Loyola-Maryland 11 1st Half 4:53
Holy Cross 14
Lamar 6:30 PM
Sam Houston St
Fla Gulf Coast 0 1st Half 19:27
Lipscomb 0
Vanderbilt 7:00 PM
(18) Miss State
IUPUI 7:00 PM
Western Ill
Abilene Christian 7:00 PM
Houston Baptist
Incarnate Word 7:00 PM
TX A&M-CC
McNeese State 7:00 PM
SE Louisiana
Oral Roberts 7:00 PM
South Dakota St
Louisiana Tech 7:00 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 7:00 PM
Middle Tennessee
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
UAB
Auburn 7:00 PM
Arkansas
Grand Canyon 7:00 PM
UMKC
Illinois 7:00 PM
(15) Nebraska
(20) Iowa 7:00 PM
Northwestern
Utah Valley U 7:05 PM
Chicago State
Green Bay 7:05 PM
Valparaiso
Ole Miss 8:00 PM
LSU
Portland State 8:00 PM
Montana
Sacramento St 8:00 PM
Montana State
North Dakota 8:00 PM
Weber State
Ohio State 8:00 PM
Wisconsin
Northern Colorado 8:00 PM
Idaho State
BYU 9:00 PM
San Francisco
St Marys-CA 9:00 PM
Loyola Marymount
Pacific 9:00 PM
Pepperdine
Cal-Irvine 9:00 PM
UC Santa Barbara
San Diego 9:00 PM
Santa Clara
UC Davis 9:00 PM
Cal Poly
Long Beach St 10:59 PM
Hawaii

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which of these teams is the most frustrating to watch right now?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close