FORT WAYNE – Matt Painter likened the NBA draft to awaiting word for the NCAA tournament.
No matter who you are, if youre on the fence, its very similar to the NCAA team thats on the fence. You have to be careful what you say because you dont control your own destiny, Purdues mens basketball coach said during a teleconference Monday.
You go and work out, you go and test and do the best you can, but still somebody has to draft you.
Painters top player from last season, Robbie Hummel, is one of the draft hopefuls. Dukes Miles Plumlee, who is from Warsaw, is another. The NBA draft is tonight.
If you asked (Hummel) a couple of months ago how hed like it to play out, this is exactly how hed like it to turn out, Painter said.
From a physical standpoint to the workouts, hes really performed at a high level and has done a good job.
North Carolinas Tyler Zeller and Kentuckys Marquis Teague are two players with state ties expected to go in the first round.
Painter said the feedback hes received has Hummel going somewhere in the second round.
But with that being said, theres no guarantees. And theres no guarantees thats the best thing for him, either, Painter said.
There are some guys out there, (Kendallvilles) Brad Miller is a great example, where he didnt get drafted and he was able to pick the right organization to start with. And then really springboard to an unbelievable career for him. You never know.
The 6-foot-8, 215-pound Hummel bounced back from two ACL injuries to average 16.4 points and 7.2 rebounds as a senior.
He showed at the end of the year that he was improving, Painter said. He was getting better, and he was more comfortable. He made another step here with his workouts. He looks a lot better.
Painter said Hummels track record as a winner is a huge benefit.
His team always wins. Hes a skill guy. He understands the game. He defers to others, makes the extra pass. Hes going to be glued in on the scouting report. Hell do whatever an organization needs for him to help them be successful like hes done at every level, Painter said.
He has too many intangibles. If I was drafting, I think he has a place on every team. Guys like that always have a place on a team. Whether he starts or is in the rotation or rarely plays, hes going to be good for the organization.
Painter is excited to see whats ahead for Hummel.
Guys are taking him for his skill level and his basketball IQ and his versatility. I think guys like that stay in that league for a long time, Painter said. No matter what happens (tonight), hes going to continue to make a stab at it. Hes going to continue to put himself in a position to be successful and play at that level.