Bennett leads class of international flavor

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UNLV’s Anthony Bennett waves to the crowd after his selection as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. With the first pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers shocked everyone.

Anthony Bennett of UNLV is headed to Cleveland, becoming the second player from UNLV to be selected No. 1 overall (1991 Larry Johnson).

Bennett, a power forward listed at 6-foot-8, 240 pounds, was the highest-selected Canadian-born player in the Common Draft era, going higher than future Cavaliers teammate Tristan Thompson (4th overall in 2011).

It's the fourth straight year a college freshman has been selected with the first overall pick: John Wall in 2010, Kyrie Irving in 2011, Anthony Davis in 2012 and Bennett this year.

At No. 2, the Orlando Magic selected Victor Oladipo, who became the first Indiana player picked in the top five since Isiah Thomas went No. 2 overall in 1981.

Two picks later, the Charlotte Bobcats took Oladipo’s Indiana teammate, Cody Zeller. It's the highest Indiana teammates have gone in draft history.

Sandwiched between those picks was Georgetown's Otto Porter Jr., who stayed local and was selected by the Washington Wizards. He's the first Georgetown player selected in the top five since 2007.

Maryland's Alex Len rounded out the top five, going to the Phoenix Suns. He's the highest-drafted player from Maryland since Steve Francis went second overall in 1999.

After Len, Nerlens Noel finally came off the board with the sixth pick, to the New Orleans Pelicans, but his rights were sent to the Philadelphia 76ers in a proposed trade that would send All-Star guard Jrue Holiday to New Orleans. Noel was the 11th Kentucky player to go in the first round since 2010.

Other notable picks included Michigan point guard Trey Burke, selected ninth overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves, but was then traded to Utah for the 14th overall pick (Shabazz Muhammad) and 21st overall (Gorgui Dieng).

Tim Hardaway Jr., also out of Michigan, was selected 24th overall by the Knicks. It’s the first time since 1994 that two Michigan players were drafted in the first round (Juwan Howard, Jalen Rose).

Hardaway’s father, Tim, played 13 seasons in the NBA. The Elias Sports Bureau tells us that in each of the last 12 NBA drafts at least one son of a former NBA player has been selected.

After beginning with a player born outside the United States, the first round ended with one as well: Nemanja Nedovic of Serbia. A total of 12 players born outside the United States were picked in the first round, the most ever according to the Elias Sports Bureau. The previous record was 11 in 2011.


C.J. McCollum, 10th overall to Portland, was the first Lehigh player ever drafted.

Steven Adams, 12th overall to Oklahoma City, became the first Pittsburgh player drafted in the first round since 1999 (Vonteego Cummings).

Shane Larkin, 18th overall to Atlanta (rights traded to Dallas), was the highest drafted player from Miami (FL) in the Common Draft era.

• With his selection as the 22nd overall pick by the Brooklyn Nets, Mason Plumlee helped elevate the family name to rare heights. His brother, Miles, was taken in the first round last year; the Plumlees joined the Zellers (Tyler and Cody) and the Grants (Horace & Harvey) as the third pair of brothers to be picked in the first round of consecutive years in the Common Draft Era.