Saturday, June 30, 2012

Sixers draftees: Harkless and Moultrie

Newark, NJ - The  Sixers look like they got a pair of contributors on Thursday, drafting St. John's swingman Maurice Harkless with the 15th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft and acquiring the draft rights to Arnett Moultrie, who was the 27th overall pick, from Miami in exchange for the draft rights to Justin Hamilton (45th overall pick) and a protected future first round pick.  
Harkless (6-8, 208) was named Big East Rookie of the Year after averaging 15.5 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.4 blocks while shooting 45.2% from the floor.  He ranked sixth in the nation in scoring among freshman and second in rebounding.
The freshman started all 32 games for the Red Storm last season, scoring in double-figures 26 times, including seven games with 20-plus points.  Harkless had a career-high 32 points on 14-of-17 shooting vs. Providence and tallied 30 points and 13 rebounds at Duke.  Overall, he recorded 11 double-doubles.
Harkless, who turned 19 last month, is from New York City and spent his senior year of high school at South Kent in Connecticut.  As a senior, he averaged 27.2 points, 13.6 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 3.1 blocks and 1.6 steals.  Harkless earned Most Valuable Player honors at the 2011 Kobe Bryant Classic held in Philadelphia.

Moultrie (6-11, 249) was named First Team All-SEC after averaging 16.4 points, 10.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists this past season while shooting 54.9% from the floor.  He led the conference in rebounding and ranked tied for 10th in the nation.  Moultrie also shot 78.0% from the line in 2011-12 after shooting 58.7% his first two seasons combined.
The 21-year-old averaged 3.7 offensive rebounds this past season, grabbing 6-plus seven times including a career-high 11 vs. Northwestern State.  Moultrie recorded 18 double-doubles in 30 games.
Moultrie spent his first two seasons at UTEP before transferring to the Bulldogs.  He sat out the entire 2010-11 season due to NCAA transfer regulations.  Moultrie was born in Queens but grew up in Memphis.  He shot over 70% from the floor during his final two seasons of high school.

Philadelphia also traded the draft rights to Tornike Shengelia, who was the 54th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, to Brooklyn in exchange for cash considerations.

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