Ager likely to lead parade of Spartans to NBA

Senior shooting guard Maurice Ager is likely to lead a parade of Spartans being selected in tomorrow's NBA draft. Leading experts point to Ager's combination of size and shooting range as the reason....

EAST LANSING - Senior shooting guard Maurice Ager is likely to lead a parade of Spartans being selected in tomorrow's NBA draft. Leading experts point to Ager's combination of size and shooting range as the reason he is the most likely Spartan to come off the board first.

Most analysts believe that junior swingman Shannon Brown will also be a first round pick but that senior center Paul Davis is likely to slip to the second round.

Most scouts point to Davis' unwillingness to mix it up inside as the reason he is likely to slip but say the former McDonald's All-American's 12-15 foot jumper could be his saving grace.

Only players drafted in the first round of the NBA draft are guaranteed contracts. Second round picks must make the squad in order to be assured of anything.

The consensus on Ager is that he is a first round pick who could go as high as 7th overall. Brown is also thought be a first round as high as 14th overall. Things are murkier for Davis who the scouts peg at best as the 28th pick and possibly falling as far as the end of the second round.

"It's a year that's got some depth to it, which in our case is more important than the overall draft because of where we are right now," said Jeff Bower, General Manager of the New Orleans Hornets who are rumored to be interested in Ager. "For our needs and our purposes, it's a pretty good draft."

Despite forecast of a second round selection, Davis is upbeat on his chances because of being able to showcase skills he wasn't able to at MSU.

"Being a big man who can put the ball on the floor and do good work outside will really help my game, I think," said Davis.

"I have a lot of stuff maybe other 6-11 guys don't have. Being able to stretch the defense, pop out to 18-19 feet and shoot it, knock the corner shot down consistently but, at the same time, being able to take a bigger guy off the dribble. Those are the things I can do to help a NBA team," said the Spartan big man who reportedly views himself as a poor man's Dirk Nowitski.

Conversely, even with assurances that he would be picked in the first round, Brown isn't taking anything for granted. "You never know what might happen. You've got to have faith. It's your decision. It's not anybody else's decision. You've got to live with it."

The NBA draft takes place in New York City at 7:00pm EST and is televised on ESPN.


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