Report: Sam Hinkie Was Only GM to See Emmanuel Mudiay Play in Person in China

The 2015 NBA Draft Lottery is being held tonight. So until we know what team is picking No. 1, it’s hard to speculate any further than just to name the possible candidates. They include the likes of big men Karl-Anthony Towns and Jahlil Okafor, and guards like D’Angelo Russell and Emmanuel Mudiay.

Most expect the top pick to be one of the big men, since selecting a guard at No. 1 is pretty rare. But Mudiay and Russell are wild cards, depending on what team lands the top spot. Like, say for instance, the Sixers. Philadelphia GM Sam Hinkie was reportedly the only general manager in the League who made the trek to see Mudiay play live in person in China, where he spent last season. That could mean something or it could mean nothing, but it’s certainly a fact worth noting as we approach the Draft.

From Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report:

Tuesday night at approximately 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, the NBA draft lottery results could add a level of intrigue to the race for the No. 1 pick.


“If it’s a team like Philly, how could they draft [Karl-Anthony] Towns or [Jahlil] Okafor if they have the first pick, when they already have Nerlens Noel and Joel Embiid? And they traded Michael Carter-Williams [this season],” one Eastern Conference general manager said. “Maybe they move down and pick two or three, but [Emmanuel] Mudiay or [D’Angelo] Russell could go No. 1. Sam Hinkie is a wild card. He was the only GM to see Mudiay in person in China.”


“I think it’s open at the top,” another East general manager said. “I think there’s a lot of talent up there, and it’s fairly deep. It wouldn’t shock me if one of the guards went No. 1.”