Hansen, possible 1st rounder, current road warrior

<B>UPDATED 8:20 P.M. EST</B>: With 16 days until the NBA draft, BYU's <b>Travis Hansen</b> doesn't have much time to think about whether he will be a first round NBA draft pick as some experts project. He has become the ultimate road warrior nowadays taking one-day trips from city to city for private individual workouts with as many as 16 NBA teams.

His father Scott Hansen, who accompanied his son to the NBA's only pre-draft camp in Chicago last week, said today that Jerry West from the Memphis Grizzlies; Phil Jackson from the LA Lakers; Kevin McHale from the Minnesota Timberwolves; Danny Ainge from the Boston Celtics; and Joe Dumars from the Detroit Pistons have shown strong interest in their individual workouts with Travis.

Other teams he has been completed workouts for include Denver, San Antonio, New Jersey, Golden State and Miami. His father could not recall the rest.

ESPN basketball analysts Andy Katz and Chad Ford, in their latest mock draft, both project Hansen as a possible 1st round pick by the Detroit Pistons.

Ford had this to say about the 6' 5", 200-pound departing Cougar: "BYU's Eminem has wowed scouts with his great combination of athleticism, strength, defensive prowess and long range shooting skills... Hansen has the maturity to contribute now."

Katz, his ESPN basketball colleague, noted "someone always makes it into the first round out of the Chicago camp... Hansen fits the profile of a hard-working guard who can do just about anything. He can make 3s, hit the mid-range jumper, dive on the floor for loose balls and take a charge.

"He would fit in well with Detroit's system under Larry Brown and be a hit on a team trying to win a title next season," Katz said.

In a separate analysis, ESPN's Ford added Hansen "shocked many observers when he benched the bar 17 times. Hansen was the real star of the combine. He also recorded a 38-inch vertical jump and set a Chicago record in a cone drill that gauges lateral quickness."

Hansen was a first team All-MWC selection and MWC co-defensive player of the year. He led the Cougars in scoring in his last two years (15.6 ppg as a junior and 16.8 ppg as a senior); led the team in blocks (20); and was second in rebounds (4.8) and assists (2.4).

At the college All-Star 2003 Portsmouth Invitational earlier this year, Hansen averaged 15.7 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, shooting 19-33 (.576), 5-8 (.625) on NBA threes, and 4-5 (.800) on free throws.

Furthermore, he was named to the Portsmouth All-Tournament Team and received the Sportsmanship Award.

High profile agent Bill Duffy was so impressed with Hansen's performance at Portsmouth that he called, traveled to Provo and successfully signed Hansen as a client. Duffy represents China's Yao Ming and a number of other high profile NBA stars.

"I'm delighted with everything that has happened (for Travis) and it's been a real blessing for Trav to be associated with Bill Duffy," Scott Hansen said.

Duffy, an 18-year veteran as an agent who was personally endorsed by Danny Ainge, had this to say today about his client: "I was impressed with his talent, versatility and fell in love with his personality after speaking with him. His age and maturity will allow him to come in and contribute right away for any team. That's a major asset."

He noted the Lakers, Pistons and Timberwolves seemed the most interested in Hansen. Duffy added that although he agrees with ESPN analyst predictions about Hansen possibly being drafted in the first round, he would have greater negotiating leverage as a second round selection because he would be able to renegotiate his contract sooner for more money than if he was a first rounder.

Duffy reiterated the fact Hansen was a mature young man, married with a great personality complements his excellent playmaking abilities as a likely NBA guard at the #2 spot.

ESPN's Ford reported the comments of an unnamed NBA scout who said: "I'm not sure where he gets drafted exactly, but there are five or six guys here who'll stick in the league for 8 to 10 years. He'll be one of them."

Hansen's father said Travis did not want to comment to the media before the draft, but that he was working very hard and doing everything possible to show and prove his value to NBA scouts, coaches and team officials.

"He's kind of a freaky kid. There aren't too many 6' 6" white kids who can do what he does," his father proudly noted.

As Hansen exits BYU's stage right, his younger twin sisters Heather and Hollie Hansen enter stage left as future BYU stars for Coach Jeff Judkins' womens basketball team.

And if you thought Travis Hansen was a great recruiting catch, his sisters may be an even bigger prize for the Cougars.

Heather was named Utah's "Miss Basketball" last season; Utah Gatorade Player of the Year; and was a four-year All-State player at Mountain View High School in Utah. Sister Hollie was no slouch either as the 4A Most Valuable Player; Defensive Player of the Year for three years; and was also a four-year starter at Mountain View.

While the future looks bright now for Scott and his children, it was only six years ago they experienced their greatest loss when his wife and their mother Laurie, 44, died from pancreatic cancer. The twin girls were 12-years-old at the time.

"I raised the kids for three years by myself. But I met and married a great woman named Lori three years ago. She had several daughters of her own," Scott noted.

So while Travis is busy traveling to individual NBA team workouts, Scott and Lori are now busy preparing for his eldest son Tyler's wedding on June 21. "We're not sure Travis will be able to make it, but he's trying to see if he can."

His other son Landon is currently serving a LDS mission. Neither of his other sons play college basketball, but "I'm just as proud of them," Scott said.

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