Saturday, April 27, 2024

38 in NBA Playoffs Also On All-Time Great College Team

 Only 1% of Division I college players make the NBA, so just sitting on an NBA bench in the playoffs is a huge accomplishment. The following are the 38 players who were on one of the all-time great college teams featured in our Value Add Basketball Game AND were on the floor for one of the last few NBA games as one of the 16 teams still alive. 

The earliest team represented is the 2006 Florida Gators with Al Horford still playing for the No. 1 seed Boston Celtics. Two of the all-time greats from 2007 teams in our game put up amazing numbers 17 years later with Kevin Durant of Texas putting up 25 points and Mike Conley of Ohio State having 15 points and seven assists for the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Obviously it is more likely a more recent team will still have players in the NBA, and the 2018 and 2019 NCAA champs from Villanova and Virginia are the only two all-time great college teams with three players alive in the NBA playoffs. The best of those is Nova's Jalen Brunson who just put up 39 points and 13 assists.

The other great teams in our game with two players still alive in the NBA playoffs are UCLA 2008 (Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook still under the big lights 16 years later), Marquette 2011 (Jae Crowder and Jimmy Butler), Iowa State 2014 (Monte Morris and Georges Niang) and finally UConn 2023 (already Jordan Hawkins and Andre Jackson since most stayed around for the 2024 title run).

Some players just got on the court (0 points), others did not get in the game either because they were injured (Jimmy Butler) or just didn't get on the rotation, but all of these are in the elite group that is coming out to warm up as one of the remaining 16 NBA Playoff teams and a member of an all-time great college team in our game.

The first 230 All-time great teams have already played at least one games, leaving only our 25th greatest player of all time John Stockton with his 1984 Gonzaga against the 2024 Grand Canyon team with Danny Wolf, and our 48th greatest player of all time Gary Payton leading his 1990 Oregon State team against the Yale 2024 team and Tyon Grant-Foster

While this is not as issue for the players alive in the playoffs below since they all played witha. College 3-point line, you will notice we include 3-point shots even for players who played before the line was there. This was estimated in various ways such as later mapping of Pistol Pete Maravich's shots to see which would have been 3-pointers to Stockton's card above based on him hitting more than 40 percent if his 3-pointers in 7 NBA seasons from the deeper line.

Team in Game     Year     Player                       NBA Playoff Team             Last Playoff Game
Florida2006Al HorfordBoston Celtics9 pts, 6 reb, +15
Ohio State2007Mike ConleyMinnesota Timberwolves15 pts, 4 reb, 7 ast
Texas2007Kevin DurantPhoenix Suns25 pts, 4 reb, 5 ast
Stanford2008Brook LopezMilwaukee Bucks14 pts, 4 reb
UCLA2008Kevin LoveMiami Heat2 reb
UCLA2008Russell WestbrookLos Angeles Clippers1 pt, 3 reb
Arizona State2009James HardenLos Angeles Clippers21 pts, 5 ast
Butler2010Gordon HaywardOklahoma City Thunder4 reb
Weber State2010Damian LillardMilwaukee Bucks28 pts, 8 ast
Duke2010Mason PlumleeLos Angeles Clippers7 pts
Marquette2011Jimmy ButlerMiami Heatdid not play
Marquette2011Jae CrowderMilwaukee Bucks0 pts
San Diego State2011Kawhi LeonardLos Angeles Clippers7 pts, 5 reb, 5 ast
Kentucky2012Anthony DavisLos Angeles Lakers33 pts, 15 reb
Creighton2014Doug McDermottIndiana Pacersdid not play
Iowa State2014Monté MorrisMinnesota Timberwolves2 pts
Iowa State2014Georges NiangCleveland Cavaliers2 pts
Oklahoma2016Buddy HieldPhiladelphia 76ers0 pts
SMU2017Shake MiltonNew York Knicksdid not play
Oregon2017Payton PritchardBoston Celtics7 pts, 3 reb
Villanova2018Jalen BrunsonNew York Knicks39 pts, 13 ast
Villanova2018Donte DiVincenzoNew York Knicks5 reb, 4 pts
Villanova2018Collin  GillespieDenver Nuggets0 pts
Virginia2019Mamadi DiakiteNew York Knicksdid not play
Virginia2019Jay  HuffDenver Nuggets0 pts
Virginia2019Braxton KeyDenver Nuggets0 pts
Auburn2019Chuma OkekeOrlando Magic3 pts
Dayton2020Obi ToppinIndiana Pacers15 pts, 6 reb
Iowa2021Luka GarzaMinnesota Timberwolves0 pts
UCLA2021Jaime JaquezMiami Heat12 pts, 5 reb, 5 ast
USC2021Evan MobleyCleveland Cavaliers14 pts, 9 reb
Duke2022Paolo BancheroOrlando Magic9 pts, 4 reb, 5 ast
Kansas2022Christian BraunDenver Nuggets5 pts, 2 reb
Duke2022Wendell MooreMinnesota Timberwolves0 pts
Connecticut2023Jordan HawkinsNew Orleans Pelicans1 reb
Connecticut2023Andre JacksonMilwaukee Bucks2 pts, 3 reb
Michigan2023Caris LeVertCleveland Cavaliers5 pts, 1 reb
Gonzaga2023Julian StrawtherDenver Nuggetsdid not play

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