How the Bobcats Drafted the Best College Team Ever

After the Charlotte Hornets moved to New Orleans after the 2001-02 season, there was no NBA in Charlotte for a couple of years. That is, until the league admitted their mistake and awarded the city an expansion team, who began play in 2004-05. The franchise was called the Bobcats (named after original owner Bob Johnson).

The Bobcats name lived from 2004-2014 and really didn’t produce any good memories. They went 0-8 in their two playoff appearances, and before the 2014-15 season rebranded back to the Hornets.

One memory of the Bobcats is their drafting. Their drafting (and overall personnel decisions) weren’t good, but if this was college, they might have run the table. Bobcats drafted the best possible NCAA Tournament team they can.

So while, the NBA version stunk, the college version was accomplished and would have been unstoppable.

First, a look back at their first round picks

  • Emeka Okafor (2004, #2)
  • Raymond Felton (2005, #5)
  • Sean May (2005, #13)
  • Adam Morrison (2006, #3)
  • Brandon Wright (2007, #8)*
  • Jared Dudley (2007, #22)
  • DJ Augustin (2008, #9)
  • Alexis Ajinca (2008, #20)**
  • Gerald Henderson (2009, #12)
  • Kemba Walker (2011, #9)
  • Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (2012, #2)
  • Cody Zeller (2013, #4)

*Brandon Wright was traded to Warriors on draft night for Jason Richardson

**Alexis Ajinca was the #20 pick in 2008, but because he did not go to college he is not included as one of the 9 players below

Of the 10 players drafted in the first round,

5 NCAA Champions – Okafor, Felton, May, Walker, Kidd-Gilchrist

3 Most Outstanding Players during NCAA Tournament run – Okafor, May, Walker)

All 10 players drafted were All Americans (ranking them in the top 15 among all college basketball players)

  • 4 First-team – Okafor, Morrison, Augustin, Walker
  • 4 Second-team – May, Dudley, Kidd-Gilchrist, Zeller
  • 2 Third-team – Felton, Henderson

3 players won the Bob Cousy Award, given to the nation’s best point guard – Felton, Augustin, Walker

1 player won the Oscar Robertson Award, given to college basketball’s player of the year – Morrison

*Brandon Wright was drafted 8th in 2007 and traded immediately on draft night to the Warriors for Jason Richarson. Richardson is not included in the numbers above, but did win the NCAA Championship and was a Second-team All American.

Mike is a member of the FWAA (Football Writers Association of America) and an alum of the University of Cincinnati.

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