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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Monday / October 23.
  • Duke, Kentucky Add to All-Time Lottery Picks Lead

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    Duke and Kentucky continue to pile up the lottery picks.

    After Thursday night’s NBA Draft, Duke (23) now leads Kentucky (22), North Carolina (18) and Kansas (17) on the all-time list of lottery picks.

    Duke’s Jayson Tatum went No. 3 to the Boston Celtics while Luke Kennard was selected No. 12 by the Detroit Pistons. (Duke also had Harry Giles go No. 20 to the Sacramento Kings, and Frank Jackson go No. 31 to the Charlotte Hornets.)

    Meantime, Kentucky’s De’Aaron Fox went No. 5 to the Sacramento Kings, Malik Monk was chosen No. 11 by the Charlotte Hornets and Bam Adebayo went No. 14 to the Miami Heat.

    In eight seasons with John Calipari at the helm, Kentucky has churned out three No. 1 selections, 24 first-rounders, 17 lottery picks and 31 total players in the NBA Draft. The 31 draft picks is more than twice as many as the next school (Duke and Kansas) since 2010. With another surge of first-round picks, Kentucky has more first-round selections (37) than any other school in the NBA lottery era (since 1985).

    “Wow, what a night,” Calipari said. “We’ve been doing this a while now but this will never get old for me and I hope it doesn’t for our fans. This is graduation night for our program. My stomach was in knots all night waiting to hear our guys’ names called, but there is nothing better than seeing the overwhelming emotions come over our players and families when their dreams come true.

    “I always believe our guys should go higher but they all ended up with great organizations,” Calipari said. “After all, there’s no crying on the yacht when you get three guys in the lottery. I wish we would have had more guys get selected but I’m confident Isaiah (Briscoe), Isaac (Humphries), Derek (Willis), Dom (Hawkins) and Mychal (Mulder) will all get their shot. I’m proud of all of them and know they will all keep chasing their dreams.”

    UNC’s Justin Jackson just missed the lottery, going No. 15 to the Kings after a trade with Portland.

    Kansas’ Josh Jackson was the school’s 17th lottery pick at No. 4 to the Phoenix Suns, while Arizona’s Lauri Markkanen became his school’s 14th when he went No. 7 to the Chicago Bulls

    Looking ahead to 2018, Duke’s Wendell Carter Jr. and Trevon Duval are both projected as lottery picks, while Grayson Allen is projected in the first round, per DraftExpress. Kentucky’s Hamidou Diallo and Nick Richards are currently projected as first-round picks, while Kevin Knox could also end up being in the mix.

    Most Total Lottery Picks, All Time (via Duke)

    Duke -23
    UK -22
    UNC -18
    KU -17
    Arizona -14
    UConn -13
    Michigan -9
    Georgetown -8
    Syracuse -8
    UNLV-8

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    Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.