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NEWARK, New Jersey - The Utah Jazz selected Enes Kanter as their third pick and Alec Burks at No. 12 in the 2011 NBA Draft Thursday night in New Jersey.
Kanter is a 19 year old, 6'11" center from Turkey and Alec Burks, also 19, is a 6"10" sophomore guard from Colorado University.
|Previous School||Stoneridge Prep|
Kanter has been on the radar of NBA executives for some time as he was chosen to participate at the 2011 NBA Draft Combine in May and has wowed many with his abilities.
Because he was ruled ineligible to play with the University of Kentucky last season, Kanter's most recent play has been overseas. In 2009 he played for Turkey at the 2009 FIBA Under-18 Championships where he averaged 18.6 points and 16.4 rebounds and led Turkey to a bronze medal.
Before that, Kanter played for the Turkish professional team Fenerbahce Ulker, at the age of 16, in four Euroleague games. Kanter's next home will be Salt Lake City as he will join the Jazz for the 2011-12 NBA season.
"I think they had to go Kanter at three because they always talk about best player available and I think from what I hear, read, everything - I think he was the best player available," said Mike Grant, KSL Sportsbeat producer. "It's a huge risk, but there are no sure things in this draft."
Fellow KSL Sportsbeat producer Ben Schroeder agreed saying, "Enes Kanter is an excellent pick for the Jazz. He's athletic, he could become a dominant power forward in many, many ways like Karl Malone was, which Jazz fans would love."
|Previous School||Grandview HS|
Alec Burks worked out for the Utah Jazz just three days ago on June 20 and told reporters following the workout that he could be a good fit for the Jazz. "I feel like they're looking for young players scoring on the wing and I fit that bill great."
During his sophomore year, Burks averaged 20.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 38 games, 37 of them as a starter. With that Burk earned himself an Associated Press All-American honorable mention, was a Wooden Award Top-20 List finalist and was the first player from Colorado University to be named to the Big 12 Basketball Championships All-Tournament Team.
"I'm fine with Burks at twelve. Twelve is a tough pick," said Grant. "Historically, it's kind of a crap shot of who you're going to get. It sounds like he's a slasher, a natural scorer. The Jazz run everything out of the post, they need guys to cut to the basket and that's who this guy is apparently."
Although some Jazz fans remained hopeful that they might see Jimmer Fredette play for the Jazz, the Milwaukee Bucks selected Fredette as the 10th pick overall for the Sacramento Kings.
During his senior season, Fredette appeared in 37 games, starting all and led the nation in scoring averaging 28.9 points per game. He also posted an average of 3.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists in 35.8 minutes of play.
Fredette posted double figures in all 37 games played as a senior, including posting 40 plus points in four games and 50 plus points once.