I selected Sergey Karasev from Russia for the Cleveland Cavaliers at No. 19 overall in the SLAMonline Mock Draft
. An excerpt of that write-up is below.
On April 9, 1996, Dominique Wilkins scored 35 points to help Greece Panathinaikos to an 81-71 Euroleague victory over CSKA Moscow.The win moved Wilkins’ team into the Euroleague championship.
Outscoring every player not nicknamed “The Human Highlight Film” that day, though, was a Russian point guard named Vasily Karasev. While his two-year-old son looked on, Karasev led CSKA with 23 points.
Two days later, Karasev helped CSKA secure a third-place Euroleague finish with a win over Real Madrid. Wilkins, meanwhile, added a Euroleague title to his Hall-of-Fame resume.
Fourteen years after meeting Wilkins in the Euroleague Final Four, Karasev—one of the best European point guards of the 1990s—would become the head coach of BC Triumph Lyubertsy in Moscow.
Triumph was originally established in 2003 under the name BC Dynamo and they currently play in Russia’s top professional league, the PBL. This past season, Triumph employed the top professional player in all of Russia.
He is the same player who heard stories growing up about the time his Dad competed against a perennial NBA All-Star in the Euroleague Final Four.
He is also the same player who Chris Grant and the Cleveland Cavaliers will be targeting with their second first round selection of the 2013 NBA Draft.