Quotables: Tyler Honeycutt and Malcolm Lee

Tyler Honeycutt
On the draft:
“I’m very excited, ecstatic – there weren’t many teams I would’ve have fit better with. First of all, Tyreke is one of the best point guards in the league. He had an off-season this last year, but people will tell you his potential through the roof. Young team, good foundation, good owners, great coach. I’m going to go out there to try to show a lot of teams they made a mistake today. But I’m not doing it for them, I’m doing it for me.”

On potentially not having the summer league because of lockout:
“Not a concern at all. I have great confidence in my ability and what I can do. What I know I can do. It might be a blessing in disguise for me. They’ve seen me work out, and I can only show them more as far as my athleticism. I think I’m the most athletic people in this draft.”

On his draft preparation:
“I don’t think I could’ve done anything better. I did everything to my ability. I was very confident.”

Malcolm Lee
On the draft:
“Mixed feelings. I definitely thought I would squeeze in there. I kinda hoped for the best and prepared for the worst. I thought I was going to get in the first. But it is what it is. You can’t dwell on it.”

On choosing to go to the movies instead of watch the draft:
“Nerves, basically. Just the whole suspense, the feeling of suspense, people hearing their names called. I feel my nerves would be better if I didn’t watch it.”

On regretting his decision:
“Not at all, I believe everything happens for a reason. Eveyrthing is a blessing in disguise. I’m not a regretful man. I look at it as the perfect situation, believe it or not.”

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Honeycutt goes to Sacramento at No. 35, Lee goes to Minnesota at 43

By Jon Gold
Staff Writer

Tyler Honeycutt traveled all the way to New Jersey for the NBA Draft, choosing to watch his future unfold in the spotlight.

Malcolm Lee didn’t even bother to flip on ESPN, soothing his already-frayed nerves with more tension, instead deciding to take in the suspenseful thriller Super 8.

Different options, but nearly the same result, as Honeycutt was selected by the Sacramento Kings with the 35th pick – the fifth pick in the second round – while Lee went eight slots later, to Minnesota (via Chicago) at pick No. 43.

Honeycutt was projected as a first-round pick for much of the draft process, even rated in the top-20 by some prognosticators, but he his pre-camp workout results were mixed, and he failed to bench press 185 pounds at the combine.

“It was really frustrating, a little nervous; I expected to go earlier,” Honeycutt said. “I think a lot of it had to do with my body and wondering if I could play at the next level because of my weight.”

Honeycutt, who is listed at 6-foot-8, 188 pounds, averaged 12.8 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.1 blocks in 35 minutes per game as a sophomore in helping lead the Bruins to the third round of the NCAA Tournament. The Sylmar High product considered the team’s potential for next season before ultimately deciding to declare early and hire an agent, but had no regrets.

“Nope, I don’t have any regrets,” Honeycutt said. “Once the season ended, I knew it what I wanted to do. I don’t regret it at all.”

Lee, meanwhile, joins former UCLA star Kevin Love with the Timberwolves, where he should have a chance to stick because of his defensive capabilities, which should complement new point guard Ricky Rubio.

Lee, who was selected in the same spot as former UCLA forward Trevor Ariza in 2004-05, was second on the team in scoring at 13.1 points per game (14th in the Pac-10) and finished fourth in rebounding at 3.1 rpg. He also averaged 2.0 assists and 0.7 steals per game in 2010-11 and was named First Team All-Pac-10 this season as well as to the Pac-10 All-Defensive Team.

“I just have to work from here,” Lee said. “I have one foot in the door; I just have to keep it going.”

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