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June 28, 2006After three months of waiting following the conclusion of their collegiate careers, J.J. Redick and Shelden Williams will officially become part of the NBA tonight.
The NBA Draft, which begins at 7:00 p.m. eastern time on ESPN, has been the subject of wide ranging speculation over the last several weeks, with any number of possibilities looking likely at various times.
While the draft as a whole could shape up in unpredictable fashion, the evening may not feature too much drama for Williams, who seems likely to end up with the Atlanta Hawks based on several reports over the last 48 hours indicating the Hawks and Rockets are working out a deal that would send Williams to Atlanta. Of course, anything is possible in a draft with as much intrigue as this one.
Redick's situation is the much more fluid one as the draft approaches. The deadeye shooter said Tuesday that he has a herniated disk in his back but doctors don't expect him to require surgery.
Redick's back problems, partially combined with his recent DWI arrest, have caused some experts to alter their mock drafts with regards to Duke's all time leading scorer.
As of Tuesday night, NBADraft.net had Redick tumbling well out of the lottery to Phoenix with the 21st pick. DraftExpress.com had Redick three slots higher at number 18 to the Washington Wizards.
However, other reports indicate Redick still has a strong likelihood of winding up with Utah when the Jazz pick 14th in the first round.
Both Williams and Redick were four year superstars at Duke. Redick inscribed his name as the school's all time leading scorer while Williams became Duke's all time leading rebounder and shot blocker.
UPDATE-Redick's draft projections continue to move all over the map. As of Wednesday morning, NBADraft.net had moved Redick back into the lottery, going 11th to the Orlando Magic. Rivals.com affiliate DraftExpress.com still has Redick slotted 18th to the Washington Wizards.