Former Ohio State star and two-time all-American Jared Sullinger will watch the NBA draft inside a Columbus restaurant, not in the green room in Newark’s Prudential Center, after the NBA declined to invite him to Thursday’s draft.NBA executive vice president Stu Jackson told ESPN.com that Sullinger would not be invited based on the reports the league had received that Sullinger wouldn’t be selected in the top 15.
“He’s more likely to go in the teens or in the 20s,” Jackson said. “We continue to have contact with teams, but at this late date we don’t anticipate inviting him.”
ESPN.com reported last week that Sullinger’s medical reports were flagged by a number of teams after the Chicago predraft camp because of a back issue. But Satch Sullinger, Jared’s father and high school coach in Columbus, refuted it, saying that his son had muscle issues and not a disk problem. Sullinger dealt with back spasms last December, forcing him to miss a road game at Kansas, but he was well enough to lead the Buckeyes to the Final Four.
Satch Sullinger said Monday that the family isn’t anticipating an invitation and will host a party at a Columbus restaurant instead.
“We haven’t been invited, so we’re not going to go,” he said.
Jackson said the official green-room list of projected lottery players will be released Tuesday. The players must be notified by late Monday since they have to be in New York by Tuesday night.