Buckner: Trail Blazers Meet With Alex Len
Candace Buckner over at The Columbian
tweeted out a wee bit of news during Game 3 of the NBA Finals. According to Buckner, the Trail Blazers met with one of the more intriguing center prospects in the 2013 Draft ...
Len averaged 11.9 points on 69 53 percent shooting
while pulling down 7.8 rebounds and blocking 2.1 shots per game during his sophomore season at Maryland. He's not participating in pre-draft workouts after undergoing surgery to repair a stress fracture
in his left ankle. According to reports, he won't be ready to return to full-contact work for at least a few months.
The interesting thing about Len meeting with the Trail Blazers in Portland is that he's projected by most every draft expert
to be long gone by time the tenth pick comes around. Case in point: ESPN.com's Chad Ford wrote today
that Len, who Ford lists as No. 5 on his draft "big board," is "seriously in the mix with the Cavs for the No. 1 pick." Both DraftExpress
and Sports Illustrated
have his going to Charlotte with the No. 4 pick
Now, it's a lot easier to get a guy into your building when he's not participating in workouts, but you wouldn't figure Len would take the trip all the way out to Portland unless their was some chance he'd either fall to No. 10 or Portland would move up via trade to select him. Also worth noting that we don't know if team owner Paul Allen attended the meeting last weekend with Len, but he was in town on Friday to meet with another big man prospect
, Indiana's Cody Zeller.
Who knows, maybe this is just both parties doing their due diligence, but teams and players expected to be taken near the top of the draft tend to be rather selective with how their use their time in the run-up to the draft.