The Sacramento Kings used the eighth pick of the 2014 NBA Draft on Thursday night to select former University of Michigan standout Nik Stauskas. Voted 2014 Big Ten Player of the Year by coaches and the media, Stauskas had a memorable two-year career for the Wolverines, and ended his sophomore campaign in 2013-14 with a 17.5 points-per-game scoring average. The Mississauga, Ontario, Canada native also shot 44.2% from three-point range, which helped lead the Wolverines into the title game of the Big Ten postseason tournament and into the Elite Eight of the NCAA postseason tourney.
Two weeks after the loss to the Kentucky Wildcats that ended the season for the Maize and Blue, Stauskas declared himself eligible for the professional draft, as did Wolverine teammate Glenn Robinson III. In addition to grabbing conference player of the year honors, Stauskas was a unanimous selection to the All-Big Ten first team and the second team of both the Associated Press and the Sporting News All-America teams, and was named to the John R. Wooden All-America team. Stauskas ranks second in U-M men's basketball history with a career 83.16% free throw percentage.
Stauskas will join a pro squad that finished the 2013-14 season with a woeful 28-54 win-loss record, the third-worst result in the league's Western Conference, and which therefore failed to reach the playoffs. As a top shooting guard with good skills handling the basketball, Stauskas displayed versatility that prompted the Kings to choose him as competition for incumbent shooting guard Ben McLemore, who averaged 8.8 points-per-game in the 2013-14 season.
Stay current with University of Michigan basketball news on the school's official athletic website, MGoBlue.com, which has more information about Stauskas, as well as Wolverine draft candidates Robinson III, McGary and Morgan.