The Phoenix Suns added some scoring with the selection of North Carolina State forward T.J. Warren with the No. 14 overall pick in the NBA Draft Thursday.
A 6-foot-8, 215-pound player, Warren averaged 24.9 points and 7.1 rebounds per game for the Wolfpack last season. He was named the ACC Player of the Year, leading the conference in scoring. He was also named a Second Team AP All-American.
“It’s a very historic franchise,” Warren told Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “They’ve had a lot of great players with [Charles] Barkley, Steve Nash and [Amar’e] Stoudemire and those guys. Just to add on to that tradition being selected by them is a great honor.”
Warren made 52.5 percent of his field goal attempts last season, most of which came from mid-range and around the basket.
“I wasn’t promised [to be picked at No. 14],” said Warren. “I knew I was in the mix for them at that number. I’m fortunate it was me. I’m just very blessed and humbled to be in this situation.”
The Durham, N.C. native was a McDonald’s All-American in 2012, his senior season at Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H.
The 20-year-old forward made his pre-draft visit to Phoenix back on June 5 and general manager Ryan McDonough came away rather impressed.
“T.J. is an elite scorer,” McDonough said Thursday. “He was one of the best scorers in the country. He was the player of the year — I believe both the coaches and the players voted him player of the year in the ACC, which is one of the best conferences in the country. He has a unique ability to put the ball in the basket.
“He’s got good size and strength. But more importantly he has good instincts and fantastic touch around the basket. We feel he has a lot of the things you can’t teach.”