BROOKLYN, N.Y. – (seminoles.com) – “With the sixth pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, the Orlando Magic select Jonathan Isaac of Florida State University,” said NBA Commissioner Adam Silver from the Barclays Center.
With his selection Isaac became the 12th first round NBA Draft selection in Florida State history, the second highest Seminole draft pick, the second player in school history chosen within the top six picks and the third NBA Draft Lottery selection in school history.
Isaac became the fifth first round selection under Seminole head coach Leonard Hamilton. He joined Malik Basely (19th overall pick by Denver in 2016), Chris Singleton (18th overall pick by Washington in 2011), Toney Douglas (29th overall pick by the Los Angeles Lakers in 2009) and Al Thornton (14th overall pick by the Los Angeles Clippers in 2007) as Hamilton’s first round picks.
“Florida is kind of home to me so it feels great (to get drafted by Orlando),” Isaac told Allison Williams of ESPN soon after hearing his named called. “My size — I’ve definitely got to get stronger. That’s the first thing I’ve got to focus on. I’m going to gain weight with time but the first thing is getting stronger.”
As the sixth overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, Isaac joins Dave Cowens (fourth overall selection of the Boston Celtics in 1970) and George McCloud (seventh overall pick of the Indiana Pacers in 1989) as the only three Seminoles picked in the top 10 of the NBA Draft.
Isaac (6-10 with a 7-2 wingspan) helped lead Florida State to a second place finish in the ACC standings and to a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament in his only season at Florida State in 2017.
Isaac earned Freshman All-American, All-ACC Honorable Mention and All-ACC Freshman team honors in 2017. He averaged 12.0 points (second on the team), 7.8 rebounds (first) and 1.5 blocked shots (first) while making 31 3-point field goals (fourth) and shooting .780 from the free throw line (second). Isaac was named the ACC Rookie of the Week twice (Nov. 21 and Jan. 23), was named to the Karl Malone (nation’s top power forward) and Wayman Tisdale (nation’s top freshman) Award watch lists as he enjoyed one of the top freshmen seasons in school history.
The Seminoles rank fourth in the ACC in the last 14 seasons with 11 overall draft selections. Only North Carolina, Duke and Syracuse have had more players taken in the NBA Draft than Florida State since Tim Pickett was selected in the second round by the New Orleans Hornets in 2004.
Isaac’s selection by the Orlando Magic gives Florida State a first round pick in the NBA Draft in consecutive seasons for the first time since the 1994 (Charlie Ward, 20t6 overall pick by the New York Knicks) and 1995 (Bob Sura, 17th overall pick by the Cleveland Cavaliers) seasons.
“Jonathan Isaac is very skilled and he is a fluid shooter,” said ESPN Draft and college Basketball Expert Jay Bilas. “He is a very mobile athlete who runs with really long strides and he’s got defensive versatility. He can block shots. He has the athletic ability to guard multiple positions and when he gets into the NBA and gets a little bit stronger. He’s got good form. He can get up and down the floor. He can drive it and he’s a great kid. He’s got ridiculous – his arms go for ever – 7-2 wingspan at 6-10 and he uses it very effectively. His shooting touch is very good; he shoots from the mid-range and can stretch it out.”
The Orlando Magic are certainly happy with their pick of Florida State’s Isaac.
“We feel Jonathan has much talent as anyone in the draft,” said Jeff Weltman, President of Basketball Operations for the Magic. “We look forward to him growing with our organization. He cares about winning and the type pf player and person who will play for his teammates.”
Seminoles In The NBA Draft Under Leonard Hamilton
2004: Tim Pickett – New Orleans Hornets; Round 2, Pick 44
2005: Von Wafer – Los Angeles Lakers; Round 2, Pick 39
2006: Alexander Johnson – Indiana Pacers; Round 2, Pick 45
2007: Al Thornton – Los Angeles Clippers; Round 1, Pick 14
2009: Toney Douglas – Los Angeles Lakers; Round 1, Pick 29
2010: Solomon Alabi – Dallas Mavericks; Round 2, Pick 50
2010: Ryan Reid – Indiana Pacers; Round 2, Pick 57
2011: Chris Singleton – Washington Wizards; Round 1, Pick 18
2012: Bernard James – Cleveland Cavaliers; Round 2, Pick 33
2016: Malik Beasley – Denver Nuggets; Round 1, Pick 19
2017: Jonathan Isaac – Orlando Magic, Round 1, Pick 6
Florida State’s Best Overall Selections in the NBA Draft
4: Dave Cowens — Boston Celtics; Round 1, Pick 4 (1970)
6: Jonathan Isaac – Minnesota Timberwolves; Round 1, Pick 6 (2017)
7: George McCloud – Indiana Pacers; Round 1, Pick 7 (1989)
14: Al Thornton – Los Angeles Clippers; Round 1, Pick 14 (2007)
15: Douglas Edwards – Atlanta Hawks; Round 1, Pick 15 (1993)
17: Bob Sura – Cleveland Cavaliers; Round 1, Pick 17 (1995)
18: Chris Singleton: Washington Wizards; Round 1, Pick 18 (2011)
19: Malik Beasley, Denver Nuggets, Round 1 Pick 19 (2016)
23: Mitchell Wiggins – Indiana Pacers; Round 1, Pick 23 (1983)
24: Sam Cassell – Houston Rockets; Round 1, Pick 24 (1993)
26: Charlie Ward – New York Knicks; Round 1, Pick 26 (1994)
29: Toney Douglas – Los Angeles Lakers; Round 1, Pick 29 (2009)