June 27, 2013
Nerlens Noel and Archie Goodwin ended up being picked closer to one another than I would have thought possible heading into the NBA Draft, but both landed in good positions.
Noel, who was the favorite to be taken first overall, slid to No. 6. New Orleans drafted him, briefly igniting dreams of a unibrow/flat top combination that would allow approximately 0.75 layups per game before the Hornets Pelicans traded Noel to the Philadelphia, where the original flat top was born and raised.
The slide denied UK's chance of a historic third No. 1 pick in four years and cost Noel about $2.2 million in rookie-year salary, but he lands with a team that's in rebuilding mode and will likely be patient with his progress.
Goodwin slid in at No. 29 (which makes three UK players under Calipari taken next-to-last in the first round; Daniel Orton and Marquis Teague also went there), taken by Oklahoma City before being traded to Phoenix. By moving into the first round (he was projected to fall in the 25-40 range), Goodwin gets a guaranteed two-year contract worth about $1.1 million in his rookie year.
With their selections, UK has produced 13 first-rounders in the past four years. That's more than any other school's number of total picks in any four-year span since the draft moved to just two rounds in 1989.