The first pick of the NBA draft is sometimes a clear-cut choice, and sometimes it’s highly debatable about who deserves the honor (and to many, the burden it comes with). Some teams pick based on their specific need, while others would want to grab the best available talent; and the team with the first pick has the best chance to make the most of it. While they are thought to have tremendous upside, they are also subject to an incredible amount of criticism, which is why first picks in the NBA draft are so closely followed by organizations, fans, and the media alike.
Who was the #1 pick in the 1994 NBA Draft? With the #1 pick in the 1994 NBA Draft, the Milwaukee Bucks selected Glenn Robinson. Robinson was a forward who played college basketball at Purdue University. Robinson played for the Bucks from 1994 to 2002 and retired in 2005.
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Why was Glenn Robinson the #1 pick?
Glenn Robinson played college basketball at Purdue University, where he earned the nickname “Big Dog.” While he was ineligible in his freshman year, he was a star in his sophomore year, averaging around 24 points and 9 rebounds a game, leading the Boilermakers to a NCAA Tournament appearance. He elevated his game in his junior year, averaging about 30 points and 11 rebounds a game, and led the nation in scoring. Purdue won the Big Ten conference title, and made it all the way to the Elite Eight in the NCAA tournament.
Although his junior year was his final season in college, Robinson racked up an impressive trophy cabinet: the John R. Wooden award (National Player of the Year), First and Second Team All-American, national scoring title, and Big Ten Player of the Year award. He showed scouts that he was an exceptional scorer, arguably better than anyone on the collegiate level, and was also a strong rebounder of the ball. At 6’7 and 240 pounds, he had size and strength for his position; he set a Purdue weightlifting record. His impressive physical attributes and obvious basketball talent made him a very sought-after draft candidate.
Why did the Milwaukee Bucks receive the #1 pick?
The NBA moved to a lottery system for the draft starting with the 1993 NBA Draft, where it gave the teams with the worst records the best chance to get the #1 overall pick. The Milwaukee Bucks were tied for the second-worst record during the 1993-1994 season, with a 20-62 record, along with the Detroit Pistons and the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Bucks had the fourth-best odds (16.3%) for receiving the #1 overall pick which they ended up getting in the lottery.
What were Glenn Robinson’s stats and accolades for his rookie season?
Glenn Robinson nearly did not play in his rookie season, as he was holding out for a huge 13-year, $100 million contract. The Bucks ended up giving him a 10-year, $68 million contract, the largest rookie contract to date (and led the NBA to setting a rookie salary cap). Robinson became a starter for the Bucks, putting in close to 38 minutes a game. He averaged 21.9 points per game (led all rookies that season) and grabbed 6.4 rebounds per game. Robinson finished 3rd in Rookie of the Year voting but found a place in the All-NBA Rookie First Team and also won Rookie of the Month twice. The Bucks improved to a 34-48 record and just missed out on the playoffs that season.
Did Glenn Robinson play for any other NBA teams?
Glenn Robinson played for the Milwaukee Bucks for 8 seasons. In the offseason before the 2002-2003 season, he was traded to the Atlanta Hawks. After a season, he was dealt to the Philadelphia 76ers. In his second season with the 76ers, Robinson was ruled out with an injury and never stepped on the court for the 76ers in that season. After he was waived after a trade, the Spurs picked him up late in the 2004-2005 season to get a veteran presence for the playoffs. Robinson ended his career that postseason, citing his injuries.
What were Glenn Robinson’s stats and accolades for his career?
Glenn Robinson finished his 11-year career with 20.7 points per game and 6.1 rebounds per game. His most memorable stint was with the team who drafted him, the Milwaukee Bucks. As a Buck, he earned 2x All-Star Game appearances (2000 and 2001) and All-NBA Rookie First Team honors (1994-1995 season). In 8 seasons with the Bucks, Robinson averaged over 20 points in all but one season. Robinson capped off his career with an NBA title with the San Antonio Spurs in 2005, after which he retired.
Who else did the Milwaukee Bucks acquire in the 1994 NBA Draft?
With the 18th pick in the first round, the Milwaukee Bucks selected Eric Mobley, a forward/center from the University of Pittsburgh. He made 51 appearances for the Bucks over 2 seasons. With the 19th pick in the second round (46th overall pick), the Bucks selected Voshon Lenard, a guard from the University of Minnesota. Lenard did not play for the Bucks, as he chose to return to the University of Minnesota for his senior year. Both picks were selected through a trade with the Orlando Magic.
The #1 overall picks in NBA Drafts often cement their own spot in history, regardless of their impact on the court. Every franchise hopes that they draft the next superstar and avoid embarrassing themselves by selecting a bust, but that is just two ends of the spectrum for #1 pick. Quite often, #1 picks land somewhere in the middle, and Glenn Robinson most certainly did. He was a good player with a skillset that translated well to the NBA, but was marred by injuries that ended up cutting his career short. While he performed well with the Bucks, he ultimately fell short of any major team or individual accolades with the team who drafted him.