Denver Nuggets President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly - Photo: Mike Rice/KOA NewsRadio
They were close. But not close enough.
The Denver Nuggets were in on several trade discussions before and during the NBA draft on Thursday night. But in the end, they could not get a deal done. One in particular was very close.
"We were very far along," Nuggets President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly said. "We thought it was done. At the eleventh hour, one of the teams involved had a change of heart. While we had countless conversations, there was one in particular we thought was going to take place. Deal-making is a delicate balance and it's frustrating when you feel you have a good deal not just for your team but other teams involved and it falls apart on the one yard line. There's certainly frustration."
The Nuggets did end up trading down in the first round, sending the 13th overall pick to the Utah Jazz in exchange for forward Trey Lyles and the 24th selection.
The Nuggets took Syracuse forward Tyler Lydon 24th, then went with Slovenian Vlatko Cancur (CAN'-char) 49th overall and point guard Monte Morris from Iowa St. 51st.
Comments from Connelly after the draft.
Comments from Nuggets GM Arturas Karnisovas. Photo below: Mike Rice/KOA NewsRadio
Click on the picture below (Rich Barnes/Getty Images) for more on the Nuggets' first round pick, Tyler Lydon from Syracuse University.
Denver Nuggets General Manager Arturas Karnisovas - Photo: Mike Rice/KOA NewsRadio
THE DENVER NUGGETS ACQUIRE TREY LYLES AND TYLER LYDON FROM THE UTAH JAZZ
Denver also selects Vlatko Cancar and Monte Morris in the second round of the 2017 NBA Draft
DENVER, June 22, 2017 – The Denver Nuggets have received Trey Lyles and the rights to Tyler Lydon from the Utah Jazz in exchange for the rights to Donovan Mitchell, Nuggets President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today.
The Nuggets entered the 2017 NBA Draft owning the 13th, 49th and 51st selections. Denver traded the rights to the 13th pick (Donovan Mitchell) to the Utah Jazz in exchange for third-year forward Trey Lyles and the rights to the 24th pick (Tyler Lydon). Denver also selected Vlatko Cancar with the 49th pick and Monte Morris with the 51st pick of the Draft.
Lyles, 6-10, 234, has played two seasons for the Utah Jazz, averaging 6.1 points and 3.5 rebounds in 151 games (37 starts). The 21-year-old forward from Saskatoon, Canada was selected with the 12th pick of the 2015 Draft after averaging 8.7 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.1 assists in one season at the University of Kentucky. He earned 2015 All-SEC Freshman Team honors while helping lead the Wildcats to a Final Four appearance.
Lydon, 6-10, 215, spent two seasons at Syracuse University where he averaged 11.6 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.6 blocks and 1.1 steals in 71 games (34 starts). He was named All-ACC Honorable Mention as a sophomore after averaging 13.2 points, a team-high 8.6 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1.0 steals per game. He was also selected to the All-ACC Academic Team as a sophomore. The 21-year-old New York native was also a member of the 2014 USA Basketball Men’s Under-18 National Team than won the 2014 FIBA Americas Championship.
Cancar, 6-8, 210, is a 20-year old forward out of Slovenia. He most recently played for KK Mega Leks of the Serbian League where he averaged 7.4 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 43 games (23 starts) in 2016-17. He spent the two previous seasons playing for LTHCast Skofja of the Slovenian League as well as both the Union Olimpija Senior and Junior Teams.
Morris, 6-3, 175, played four seasons at Iowa State University, averaging 12.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1.61 steals in 140 career games (121 starts). He was named All-Big 12 First Team as a senior in 2017 with averages of 16.4 points, 4.8 points, 6.2 assists and 1.5 steals per game. The Grand Rapids, Michigan native was named to the All-Big 12 Second Team as both a junior and sophomore.