Friday, July 12, 2013

Nerlens Noel to wear No. 5 for number of teams who passed him in draft


The 2013 NBA Draft will go down in history as one of the more unpredictable drafts of all-time.

It saw a number of shocking selections, trades, and snubs, but there was arguably none more shocking than when Nerlens Noel, who many believed would be the top overall pick, slid all the way to No. 6 overall.

The University of Kentucky product was drafted by the New Orleans Pelicans and immediately traded to the Philadelphia 76ers.

The fact that the talented center fell that far in the draft likely had something to do with an ACL injury he suffered in mid-February during a game. The injury ultimately ended Noel's career with the Wildcats just after it merely started.

Well, Noel has decided to use his misfortune in the draft as motivation rather than a bad omen. Noel plans to wear the No. 5 with the 76ers to constantly remind himself (and others) of all the teams who passed on him in the draft. Those teams would be the Cavaliers, Magic, Wizards, Bobcats, and Suns.

For what it's worth, Noel donned the No. 3 in both high school and at Kentucky. So, the No. 5 will certainly be a new thing for him.

As Ball Don't Lie points out, Noel is not the first player to make a source of motivation quite so public. Throughout his career, Gilbert Arenas wore zero on his jersey to remind himself of the relative lack of scholarship attention he got from big-game college programs, the teams that opted not to select him in the first round of the 2001 NBA Draft, and any other doubters he encountered before or after he made the league.

Via Ball Don't Lie

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