Porter-Gaud alum Khris Middleton saw his NBA dream come true on Thursday night when the former Cyclones star was drafted by the Detroit Pistons in the 2nd round of the annual draft with the 39th overall pick.
Middleton, who spent 3 seasons at Texas A+M, averaged 13.2 points per game last season as a junior for the Aggies. The 6-foot-7 Middleton is considered a good midrange threat and a solid passer, although he shot only 41.5 percent from the field in 2011-12.
Middleton missed 12 games last season with a knee injury. He started 72 games in three seasons at Texas A&M before declaring early for the draft. His best year came as a sophomore when he averaged 14.4 points and 5.2 rebounds.
"Middleton is a guy we valued very, very highly early on in his career," Pistons personnel director George David said. "We valued him as a first-round talent because he can flat-out shoot the basketball. He's one of the better shooters in this draft and with his size, we feel he's a very, very valuable asset. He's a guy who had a couple of tough breaks in his career. Had those things not happened, there's no way he would have been there where we took him."
Middleton caused a stir after his sophomore season at A&M when he was invited to Kevin Durant's Skills Camp in Chicago and held his own against the NBA's three-time scoring champion in a scrimmage.
"It was a great experience going against the best scorer in the game right now, a scoring champion," Middleton said in Chicago. "He's a great player and I just tried to take on that challenge to guard him and I tried to hold my own."
When I told Middleton I'd heard he played well, he smiled and said, "That's what I've heard."