Big Lead Sports Bar



Bob Pompeani announced tonight on the 6 PM KDKA news that Pitt's DeJuan Blair will declare for the 2009 NBA Draft, forgoing his final two years of collegiate eligibility. From the KDKA website:

"My sources have confirmed that Dejuan Blair has made up his mind...and will turn pro after two years with the Pitt basketball team. I expect an official announcement within the next week to ten days."

The bigger news would be if Blair decided to come back, but I think that ship sailed sometime shortly after the first time he dominated Hasheem Thabeet in front of a national audience. The only remaining question would be where in the first round Blair would land. has the big man going 20th to Mark Cuban's Dallas Mavericks, has him at #22 to the New Orleans Hornets, and has the Utah Jazz selecting Blair at #19. Of course, that will change numerous times before the draft happens this summer, but it's a rough estimate of where he's slotted to go at this moment in time.

Here's a look at the NBA rookie salary scale from 2008, which means that as long as Blair gets selected at #21 or higher, he'd become a rookie millionaire. That's a pretty enticing proposition for any young man to turn down.


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HotDog_Zanzabar said...

Good luck Mr. Blair. I will miss the stock notes they say on every national telecast of how he grew up 14 inches away from campus. Certainly better than the years past where we were reminded every game of Levon Kendall's exploits from the Canadian national team.

Someone Somewhere said...

I'd be interested to know if he plans on hiring an agent or not. If not, and he isn't projected to be a lottery pick, I think he might test the waters and end up sticking around for another year to see if he can move up. Of all the skills that translate well from college to the pros, rebounding is at the top of the list. I think teams are going to shy away from him in the lottery because of his size and inability to shoot outside of 10 feet. His shot isn't atrocious and he can probably develop better range, but he's always going to be a beast on the glass. In many ways it's a win-win for him as (based on projections) he could go to a western conference contender and develop his game and not be required to contribute right away. Or he can stay and team up with Dante Taylor to combine for about 30 offensive rebounds a game. Being a Trail Blazers fan, it's going to pain me greatly to see him go and play for any of the aforementioned teams.