NBA Draft 2021 will take place on Thursday, July 29 at 8 p.m. ET (03:00 EEST) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Twenty draft prospects are scheduled to attend and have their once-in-a-lifetime experience on the biggest stage.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum will announce the selections for the first and second rounds, respectively.

Here is a by-the-numbers look at this year’s NBA Draft:


Since the NBA Draft Lottery began in 1985, four first overall picks have won an NBA championship with the team that drafted them: David Robinson (San Antonio Spurs; first pick in 1987), Tim Duncan (Spurs; first pick in 1997), LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers; first pick in 2003) and Kyrie Irving (Cavaliers; first pick in 2011).  James won an NBA championship in his second stint with Cleveland.

Since the two-round format was adopted in 1989, Kentucky holds the record for the university with the most picks in a single NBA Draft – six in each 2012 and 2015.

Barclays Center will host the NBA Draft for the eighth time.  It last hosted the event in 2019 prior to the pandemic.

A college freshman has been the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft in each of the last 11 years.

This marks the 15th consecutive year that Adam Silver will announce draft selections as either deputy commissioner (seven years) or commissioner (eight years including 2021).

The NBA Draft will be held in July for the first time since 1947, the year of the inaugural draft.


In 2020-21, USC forward-center Evan Mobley became the first player to win the Pac-12 Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, and Freshman of the Year awards in the same season.

Florida State forward Scottie Barnes, NBA G League Ignite guard Jalen Green and Gonzaga guard Jalen Suggs have won three gold medals together with USA Basketball in international play: 2019 FIBA U-19 Basketball World Cup, 2018 FIBA U-17 Basketball World Cup and 2017 FIBA U-16 Americas Championship.

Four 2021 NBA Draft prospects were teammates on the Montverde (Fla.) Academy team that went 25-0 during the 2019-20 high school season: Scottie Barnes, Oklahoma State guard Cade Cunningham, Arkansas guard Moses Moody and North Carolina center Day'Ron Sharpe. 

Adelaide 36ers guard Josh Giddey (Australia) led Australia’s National Basketball League in assists with 7.6 per game in the 2020-21 season.

Besiktas forward Alperen Sengun (Turkey), the 2020-21 Turkish League MVP, turned 19 on July 25.

Tennessee guard Keon Johnson set the NBA Combine record with a max vertical jump of 48 inches.  

Last season, Cade Cunningham became Oklahoma State’s first consensus All-America First Team selection in 75 years.


The Houston Rockets franchise is set to select second overall in the NBA Draft for the first time in 51 years.  In 1970, the then San Diego Rockets selected five-time NBA All-Star Rudy Tomjanovich with the No. 2 pick.

The Oklahoma City Thunder have three picks in both the first round (Nos. 6, 16, and 18 overall) and the second round (Nos. 34, 36, and 55 overall).

The Toronto Raptors are poised to pick fourth overall in the NBA Draft for the first time since selecting newly elected Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Chris Bosh at the same spot in 2003.

The Golden State Warriors’ first pick in the NBA Draft is at No. 7 overall, a spot where they have selected five-time NBA All-Star Chris Mullin (1985), two-time Kia NBA MVP Stephen Curry (2009), and NBA champion Harrison Barnes (2012) during the NBA Draft Lottery era.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are set to pick third overall in the NBA Draft for the first time in 49 years.

The Detroit Pistons will make the first pick in the NBA Draft for the first time in 51 years.  In 1970, the Pistons used the top pick to select eight-time NBA All-Star Bob Lanier, a longtime ambassador for the NBA Cares program.

Family Ties

Auburn guard Sharife Cooper’s sister, Te’a Cooper, is currently averaging 9.2 points per game with the Los Angeles Sparks in her second WNBA season. 

Michigan forward Franz Wagner (Germany) and his brother, Orlando Magic forward-center Moritz Wagner, were both All-Big Ten Team selections with the Wolverines. 

Houston guard Quentin Grimes' brother, NHL veteran Tyler Myers, was selected 12th overall in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.

Boise State forward Derrick Alston Jr.’s father, Derrick Sr., was the 33rd overall pick in the 1994 NBA Draft and played three seasons in the league.

Tennessee guard Jaden Springer is the son of Gary Springer, who was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers in the 1984 NBA Draft.

Loyola Maryland forward Santi Aldama (Spain) is the son of Santiago Aldama Aleson, who was a member of the Spanish National Team that competed against the Dream Team at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.

Gonzaga guard Joel Ayayi (France) is the brother of Valeriane Ayayi Vukosavljevic, who played in the WNBA in 2015.

Global Game

Australia’s Josh Giddey is poised to become the first NBA Academy graduate to be drafted into the NBA. Giddey attended NBA Global Academy in Canberra, Australia.

If NBA G League Ignite forward Jonathan Kuminga is drafted in the top six, he would be the highest-drafted player from the Democratic Republic of the Congo since Dikembe Mutombo was drafted fourth overall in 1991.

Last year, a record nine players from or with ties to Nigeria were drafted: Isaac Okoro, Onyeka Okongwu, Aaron Nesmith, Precious Achiuwa, Zeke Nnaji, Udoka Azubuike, Desmond Bane, Daniel Oturu, and Jordan Nwora.

Thirteen international players have been selected No. 1 overall in the NBA Draft, most recently Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (Bahamas) in 2018.

A record 27 international players were selected in the 2016 NBA Draft, including a record 15 in the first round and a record-tying 12 in the second round.

Sixty-eight former Basketball Without Borders campers have been drafted into the NBA.  This year’s class features a number of potential draftees with BWB experience, including Gonzaga guard Joel Ayayi (France; BWB Europe 2017), Western Kentucky forward-center Charles Bassey (Nigeria; BWB Global 2017 & 2018), Paris Basket guard Juhann Begarin (France; BWB Europe 2019; BWB Global 2020), Zalgiris Kaunas guard Rokas Jokubaitis (Lithuania; BWB Europe 2017), Adelaide 36ers guard Josh Giddey (Australia; BWB Asia 2018; BWB Global 2020), Texas forward-center Kai Jones (Bahamas; BWB Americas 2017), Seton Hall forward Sandro Mamukelashvili (Georgia; BWB Global 2017), KK Mega Basket forward-center Filip Petrusev (Serbia; BWB Europe 2017; BWB Global 2018), Alabama guard Josh Primo (Canada; BWB Global 2020) and Oostende forward Amar Sylla (Senegal; BWB Africa 2018; BWB Global 2019).

The NBA Draft will reach fans live in 215 countries and territories in 25 languages on their televisions, computers, mobile devices, and tablets.

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