After buying and selling back from the No. 21 pick to No. 23 choose in the 2019 NBA Draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder selected wing prospect, Darius Bazley. Standing at 6’nine” with a 7’0″ wingspan, Bazley is an extremely interesting player both on and off the courtroom.
Taking the street less traveled, Bazley has one of the most unique backgrounds of any draft prospect in the 2019 magnificence. Here are four things you want to recognize the latest member of the Thunder roster.
From High School to the NBA
Darius Bazley took the road less traveled in skipping college and going instantly into the NBA. As a senior at Princeton High School in Ohio, he was ranked the thirteenth satisfactory excessive faculty participant within the Class of 2018 by ESPN.
Upon receiving multiple gives from a number of the top faculties within the country such as Florida, Georgetown, Louisville, Ohio State, and Syracuse, Bazley ultimately determined to decide to Ohio State. He later would de-commit from Ohio State and signal a letter of rationale to play at Syracuse.
As one of the first-class players in the nation, Bazley was a player in activities together with the McDonald’s All-American Game, Jordan Brand Classic, and Nike Hoop Summit. At the quiet of his senior 12 months, Bazley announced that he might forego his college eligibility and cross straight to the NBA and be part of the G-League as a substitute.
In August of 2018, Bazley all over again modified his plans and determined he could now not be a part of the NBA G-League and would as an alternative spend a year training in my opinion earlier than entering the 2019 NBA Draft. Although this is not a commonplace path to the league, he felt it changed into the excellent decision for him. This might, in the end, furnish his eligibility to go instantly into the NBA without playing in university or the NBA G-League.
Klutch Sports Client
Upon his preliminary selection to go instantly from high faculty to the NBA G-League, Bazley signed with Rich Paul of Klutch Sports. Paul represents the various maximum-quality players within the NBA which includes LeBron James, Anthony Davis, John Wall, Draymond Green, Ben Simmons, and plenty of others.
This was a large step for a player like Bazley, who could want credibility and steering to make this precise transition into the NBA. Who better than Rich Paul to help him make this huge soar and achieve sponsorships off the courtroom in addition to an NBA contract upon being drafted?
New Balance ‘Internship’
In October of 2018, Marc Stein of the New York Times announced Bazley signed a professional endorsement agreement with New Balance. This deal could be based as an ‘internship’ which could pay him at minimal $1 million and will attain $14 million if he hits performance incentives.
This changed into a massive deal for Bazley, who could be getting paid a whole lot greater than the $125,000 he may want to have earned in his one season playing within the NBA G-League. Coming into the NBA, Bazley has the backing of New Balance and could look to prove them right on signing him at simply 18 years antique.
Connection with Mike Miller
Prior to his internship with New Balance, Bazley wanted to train with Memphis-based total basketball teacher Raheem Shabazz. Using his connections, Rich Paul all over again worked his magic, making this take place. After a one-week education session, Bazley decided he desired to stay in Memphis to keep training.
In order for that to occur, he had to discover a person to assist maintain to polish his sport. Paul reached out to former NBA sharpshooter and contemporary assistant college basketball instruct for Memphis University to look at what he may want to do.
Not best turned into Miller willing to help Bazley work on his recreation, but he additionally supplied to permit Bazley to live with him and his own family until his internship with New Balance started out. This is simply some other a part of the extremely precise historical past of Darius Bazley that in the end led to him being drafted in the first spherical of the 2019 NBA Draft.