NBA teams draft players with South Dakota ties
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Two basketball players with South Dakota ties have been chosen in the second round of the NBA draft.
South Dakota State University standout guard Nate Wolters ended up with the Milwaukee Bucks and Yankton native Colton Iverson with the Boston Celtics in Thursday night’s draft.
Wolters, who ended his career with the Jackrabbits as the school’s all-time leader in points and assists, was drafted initially by the Washington Wizards with the 38th overall pick. The 6-foot-5 point guard who averaged nearly 23 points per game for SDSU last season then was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers and again to the Bucks.
“Being drafted to play in the NBA is a dream that I’ve worked my entire life to achieve,” Wolters said in a statement. “Milwaukee is a great organization and I am very appreciative for this opportunity. I can’t wait to start my career as a Buck.”
Wolters watched the draft from his family’s home in St. Cloud, Minn. He became the first SDSU player to be drafted since Steve Lingenfelter went to the then-Washington Bullets in 1981.
Iverson also watched the draft outside of his family home, in Yankton. He ended up with Boston after the Celtics traded with the Indiana Pacers for the 53rd overall pick.
Iverson, a 7-foot, 255-pound center, started his college career with the University of Minnesota and later transferred to Colorado State. He led that team in scoring and rebounding last season, averaging 14 points and 10 boards per game.
“I worked my entire life for tonight,” Iverson told the Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan newspaper. “It was the greatest feeling ever, no joke.”
The selection of Iverson ends a 13-year drought for native South Dakotans. Mitchell’s Mike Miller was drafted by Orlando in 2000. He now plays for the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat. Iverson’s father, Chuck, was drafted by the Seattle Supersonics in 1973.