With the 2018 NBA Draft tonight and Keita Bates-Diop slated to be drafted late in the first or early in the second round, it is time to look back at how the recent draft picks have fared for the Buckeyes. Yes, for some, their careers may have only just begun, but to this point, here’s a ranked look at how the last five Ohio State players drafted have performed.
5.) Deshaun Thomas (2013, 2nd Round, Pick 58)
Thomas was drafted by the Spurs back in 2013 with the third-last selection, and while he has never made his way to the NBA, he has found some success on various European teams. Averaging 11.5 points per game in the EuroLeague for Macabi Tel Aviv. He also won the Israel League Cup this year for the same team, so who really needs NBA titles?
4.) Jon Diebler (2011, 2nd Round, Pick 51)
Another OSU alum who never made it to the NBA, Diebler, much like Thomas, has made his career through European play. Diebler shoots an insanely high three-point percentage (49.1 percent) in his European career, finishing first in the category in Greek A1 in 2011-12 and in the EuroCup in 2014-15. Diebler also won the Turkish League with Pınar Karşıyaka, so 2007’s Ohio Mr. Basketball has certainly made his dent, just overseas.
3.) Jared Sullinger (2012, 1st Round, Pick 21)
Sullinger is the first on this list to see some NBA playing time, and he did much more than that. Averaging 10.8 points per game in 269 career games played, the vast majority being with the Boston Celtics, Sullinger made a solid career being a solid spot-up shooter as a power forward. The NBA stats are one thing, but Sullinger is a bona fide star in China for the Shenzen Leopards, averaging an obscene 30.1 points and 16.6 rebounds per game in his first season.
2.) D’Angelo Russell (2015, 1st Round, Pick 2)
Only in the second spot mostly because he’s only played three years, Russell holds all the potential in the world to be a star. Averaging 14.6 points and 4.3 assists for the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets, only time will tell if Russell can lift those numbers even higher. Injuries have been in the way recently as well, but Russell looks to be the star Brooklyn is ready to build around.
1.) Evan Turner (2010, 1st Round, Pick 2)
Coming in at the top of the list is Turner, who has played eight solid seasons in the NBA thus far, even if he has become more of a role player for the Portland Trail Blazers. Turner has played 613 regular season games, averaging 10.2 points and 4.8 rebounds per game over his career. Turner has also done something Russell has not yet: played in the postseason, with 8.8 points per game in 47 appearances. Turner looks to continue his play on a young, growing Trailblazers team for seasons to come.