Draft night in the 901 was an uneventful one, with only one draft pick the entire night. The Memphis Grizzlies just sat back and enjoyed the show as other teams raced to create their draft night magic just like the Grizzlies did last season when they drafted Ja Morant with the second pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.
With this year’s pick, the Memphis Grizzlies acquired a 6’8 forward out of Michigan State by the name of Xavier Tillman Sr. Tillman comes to Memphis as a strong defensive player after having won the 2019-2020 Big 10 Player of the year honors. Tillman was also named to the All-Big Ten Second Team after recording 13.7 points, 10.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.21 steals, 2.10 blocks throughout 31 games all, of which he started. Tillman also led the entire Big Ten in defensive rebounds with 237 and third in total rebounds with 320, and fourth in blocks with 65.
The Grizzlies acquired the pick by making a trade with the Kings that sent Robert Woodward and a future 2022 draft pick to Sacramento.
With the pick, the Grizzlies continue to build for the future by adding guys that have the potential to be franchise players. Tillman is just the guy for the job. He’s rugged, not afraid to get his hands dirty, and he’s an all-around beast on the defensive side of the court. He will remind the fan base of a younger Zach Randolph, both Michigan State guys who learned from one of the best in Head Coach Tom Izzo.
The addition of Xavier Tillman will also reunite two former teammates at Michigan State with Jaren Jackson and Xavier Timman. The two were teammates on the 2017-2018 Michigan State team that finished the season 30-5 including, a Big Ten regular-season championship.
Fans can expect Tillman to come in right away and make an immediate impact for this Memphis Grizzlies team. The Grizzlies will turn to Tillman for his defensive abilities both on the floor and on the glass.
The NBA season will get underway during the week of Christmas with, the first game coming on December 22nd.