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.
Louisville’s Dieng Projected as Late-First Rounder
Louisville junior center Gorgui Dieng is projected as a late-first round or early-second round pick should he enter the NBA Draft.
“Bottom of first round or early second round for someone looking for an off-the-bench interior defender,” one veteran NBA scout told SNY.tv.
DraftExpress.com has the 6-foot-11 Dieng going at No. 28 in the first round.
Louisville coach Rick Pitino told CBSSports.com that Dieng is “98 percent gone” and will participate in Senior Day activities on Saturday when Louisville hosts Notre Dame in the final Big East game for both teams.
“If he is projected as a first-rounder, he is leaving,” Pitino said, according to CBSSports.com. “And I’m almost sure he’ll be taken in the first round.”
Dieng will reportedly not hire an agent, meaning he could return to school if he chose to.
A leading contender for Big East Defensive Player of the Year honors, Dieng is averaging 9.9 points, 10.0 rebounds and 2.5 blocks for Louisville, which still hopes to get a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
“I always had NBA on my mind,” Dieng said Friday at a press conference, according to Eric Crawford. “If I do that, a lot of people at my (home) can learn from me, and I can be a role model.”
He added that he’s focused on the Big East and NCAA Tournaments for now.
“I have a lot of goals I want to reach before we talk about NBA,” he said.
Photo: Getty Images
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, 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.