It was a long wait for former Louisville forward Ray Spalding to hear his name called, but he was selected in the second round of the 2018 NBA Draft.
Spalding, who doubles as both a former Louisville player and alumni from Trinity High School, was taken 56th overall by the Dallas Mavericks. The pick was originally held — and selected — entering the draft by the Philadelphia 76ers, but Dallas traded their 54th pick to acquire both the 56th overall pick as well as the 60th and final selection in the 2018 draft.
Ray Spalding joins Slovenian guard Luka Doncic, former Villanova guard Jalen Brunson and Dayton’s Kostas Antentokounmpo as the four selections made by the Mavericks in the 2018 NBA Draft. Like Spalding, Doncic was taken with the third overall pick held by the Atlanta Hawks; however, the Mavericks traded their fifth overall pick (Trae Young) and a protected first-round pick in exchange for Doncic.
Spalding entered the NBA Draft coming off his junior year in the 2017-18 season, where he was an All-ACC Honorable Mention player. He averaged 12.3 points and 8.7 rebounds per game on 54.3% shooting, also posting 11 double-doubles (sixth in the ACC).
Spalding marks the 75th U of L player taken in the NBA Draft in school history, including seven in the last five years. Spalding joins former U of L teammates Donovan Mitchell (2017, 13th overall to the Jazz via Denver) and Chinanu Onuaku (2016, 37th overall to the Houston Rockets), as well as Terry Rozier, Montrezl Harrell, Russ Smith and Gorgui Dieng to be drafted in that timespan. With the draft pick, it makes Louisville the only school to have a player selected in each of the last five NBA & NFL drafts.