Bucks tap Aussie centre Bogut as top pick in draft
By Paul Levine Jun 28, 2005, 23:55 GMT
Los Angeles - The Milwaukee Bucks went "Down Under" to make seven-foot Australian centre Andrew Bogut the top overall pick in the NBA Draft 2005 on Tuesday night.
Bogut was the most dominant player in college basketball in 2005. The 20-year-old averaged 20.4 points per game, shot a sizzling 62 per cent from the floor and grabbed 12.4 rebounds to lead the University of Utah to a 29-6 record.
The dark, shaggy-haired starting centre on the 2004 Australian Olympic team decided to leave after his second season and enter the draft as an early entry candidate, to the good fortune of the Bucks.
Bogut, who is expected to start in the middle, appears to be a perfect fit to complement sharpshooter Michael Redd. He possesses a great contrast of quickness and power; he's an excellent passer who is likened to L.A. Lakers veteran big man Vlade Divac, and Sacramento's Brad Miller for his perimeter shooting.
However, the Bucks must re-sign free agent Redd if they are to reverse a dismal 30-52 season.
"Andrew is highly skilled," Bucks general manager Larry Harris said. "He has great hands and great feet. He's a tremendous, tremendous passer. He has the agility to make players around him better. He wants to win, and he's not afraid."
Bogut is the first of what is projected to include a total of eight international players taken in the first round, including Spanish centre Fran Vasquez and Russian small forward Yaroslav Korolev. That would equal last year's total and fall one short of the record set in 2003.© dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur