For the 60 players who heard their name called in the 2013 NBA Draft, Thursday night was one of the biggest nights of their lives. For the hopefuls that didn't, it marked the beginning of an arduous process that could result in an NBA career, but might not.
Scott Schroeder took a look at the top 15 players left undrafted. Over the coming days, we'll find out where these players hope to start their NBA careers, or at least get noticed. Here's a quick roundup of what we know about the day after the end of the draft.
- Arguably the biggest name left off the board Thursday night was C.J. Leslie, and it didn't take him long to find a potential NBA home. The 6'9 power forward out of North Carolina State signed a deal with the New York Knicks, likely ensuring him a spot in summer league and in training camp in the fall. Leslie, who averaged 15.1 points and 7.4 rebounds for the Wolfpack, seemed like a mid-to-high second-round pick, but wasn't able to work out before the draft due to a hip injury and his stock tumbled. With the Knicks pressed up against the salary cap, his unguaranteed contract is perfect, and after working the pick-and-roll with Lorenzo Brown in college, he should fit on a team that gets a lot of offense from that type of action.
- The Celtics signed Phil Pressey, the maddeningly inconsistent Mizzou point guard. It seemed a poor decision of Pressey to leave school after his junior career, with many thinking he'd need to prove he could solve his poor shot selection and turnover woes to make it to the NBA with his 5'11 frame. His decision didn't pay off with a draft pick, either, but he'll have a pair of similarly athletic guards in Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley to mentor him on a rebuilding Celtics squad.
- 6'7 small forward Rodney Williams out of Minnesota is an explosive leaper with a huge wingspan, but didn't display the basketball skills to earn a selection despite a senior year where he averaged 10.1 points. He'll sign with the Philadelphia 76ers, though, the team that made some of the biggest splashes of draft night by landing Nerlens Noel and Michael Carter-Williams as well as second-round pick Arsalan Kazemi. Between Noel, Kazemi and Williams, there's a lot of length and rebounding talent for a rebuilding squad.
- Syracuse guard Brandon Triche will sign with the Charlotte Bobcats. The 6'4 two-guard was a key part of the Orange team that made the Final Four this past year and the other half of a backcourt with No. 11 pick Michael Carter-Williams. Triche didn't seem as NBA ready, though, as he didn't crack many top 100 lists of eligible players.
- VCU guard Troy Daniels wasn't expected to be drafted, but did display an NBA skill in his shooting touch as he hit 40.3 percent from downtown while taking over eight threes a game for the Rams. It was enough for the Bobcats to offer him a free agent deal.
- C.J. Harris out of Wake Forest has signed with the Nuggets. Harris is a sharpshooter on the wing, which is an area Denver is looking to improve.
- Scott Wood out of North Carolina State has reached a deal with the Clippers.
- Richard Howell of North Carolina State has signed with the Nuggets. At 6'7, he has the skill set of an energetic power forward but lacks the size to complement it. Still, he averaged 10.9 rebounds per game and was fifth overall nationally in that category. He was listed in Schroeder's top 15 undrafted free agents list.
That's just about it for free agent deals, but we do have some news on summer league invites. A few players were on Schroeder's list of the top 15 undrafted free agents:
- Marquette's Vander Blue will play for the Grizzlies, a solid defensive fit for one of the league's best defensive teams. Blue's decision to leave the Golden Eagles early didn't pay off after an Elite Eight run.
- Notre Dame center Jack Cooley will play for the Grizzlies as well. Cooley's another Memphis-type player, undersized at center but capable of snagging boards like few else in the draft.
- Illinois guard Brandon Paul will play for the Timberwolves. He needs to display a shooting touch to go along with his athleticism if he's going to make the league.
- St. Mary's point guard Matthew Dellavedova, considered the best pick-and-roll point guard in college basketball this past year, will join the Orlando Magic's summer league squad. He was also on the Australian national team at the Olympics.
- BYU Center Brandon Davies will play for the Clippers. Davies averaged 17.7 points and 8 rebounds per game in his senior season. He has a solid motor and great rebounding instincts.
- Duke's Seth Curry was invited to summer league by the Bobcats, but he will not be ready to play after just being cleared for physical contact recently. He could be ready for an invite once teams open training camp.
Some assorted names:
- Freak Memphis athlete D.J. Stephens will split time between the Miami Heat and Dallas Mavericks in summer league. I want him to make the league selfishly for dunk contest purposes.
- Indiana guard Christian Watford will play for both the homestate Pacers and the Mavs.
- Southern Miss' Dwayne Davis, who averaged 16 points per game for the Golden Eagles, will join the Warriors in summer league.
- Combo forward C.J. Aiken out of St. Joseph's will play with the Sacramento Kings during summer league. He is known for his athleticism, great length and amazing leaping ability.
- Former North Carolina State forward and Euroleague player Courtney Fells will join the Celtics in summer league.
- Princeton's Ian Hummer will join the Los Angeles Lakers in summer league. The undersized power forward is known for his high-energy style of play.