Orange Fizz – Daily Syracuse Recruiting News & Team Coverage


Chris McCullough, Rakeem Christmas Drafted

Two former Syracuse players heard their names called in the 2015 NBA Draft on Thursday.

Syracuse pride goes beyond the Hill and the Carrier Dome.  Orange fans see their hearts fill with joy as they watch former Syracuse players like Carmelo Anthony and Michael Carter-Williams flourish in the NBA and tonight two more players joined the ranks of Syracuse players in the NBA.

After a surprising decision to declare for the NBA Draft, Chris McCullough was selected 29th overall by the Brooklyn Nets.

McCullough was very highly touted coming into college but his unspectacular numbers and devastating knee injury kept him from being picked as highly as he may have once hoped.  In the days leading up to the draft, some analysts had some harsh words for McCullough, suggesting he will be a bust in the NBA.

It will be interesting to see if McCullough is ready for the start of the season as he recovers from an ACL injury, which occurred against Florida State in January.  Obviously, taking McCullough is a bit of a risk but he has a very high ceiling.

He is a good fit for the Nets, who may be in desperate need of a big man.  There is no reason to think he will be a superstar, but with some hard work and some luck, McCullough can find himself in the starting five somewhere.

The heart and soul of the 2014-15 Orange, Rakeem Christmas, wearing his best (worst?) jacket, was taken in the second round, 36th overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves.  However, a trade has him going to the Eastern Conference champion Cleveland Cavilers, pending league approval.

Christmas really played his way into the NBA in his senior season at Syracuse.  His last year was the first time that he was the superstar of the team.  He added onto his spectacular season at Syracuse in the weeks leading up to the draft, as many scouts were blown away by him at  the Draft Combine.

There is no reason why Christmas can’t be a very solid role player in the Association.  His size, at just under 6-10, isn’t overwhelming, but his wingspan is significant at 7-5, and this allow him to play the 4 in the NBA.

Orange Nation rejoices tonight as two of its own reaches the biggest stage in basketball.

The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.


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