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NBA hopefuls Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary entering a new chapter in their lives

2014-06-25T23:45:00Z 2014-06-28T15:19:10Z NBA hopefuls Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary entering a new chapter in their livesAl Hamnik al.hamnik@nwi.com, (219) 933-4154 nwitimes.com
June 25, 2014 11:45 pm  • 

Invitations to the 2014 NBA Draft Turnabout will be handed out tonight as Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary wait by the phone for a call to the formal affair.

Both region stars have been practicing the proper steps and moves since they were old enough to dribble a ball.

The 6-foot-6 Robinson prepped at Lake Central, the 6-10 McGary at Chesterton. They were roommates at Michigan for two years before opting for the draft.

There is no doubt they'll be among the 60 picks in tonight's two rounds. The only question is, by whom?

In several mock drafts, McGary was projected as the Los Angeles Clippers' No. 28 pick to provide backup for Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan.

Robinson had been tabbed as the 30th overall pick of the world champion San Antonio Spurs, but in Bleacher Report's final mock draft, he was tabbed as the Milwaukee Bucks' 31st selection.

"He's one of the most unselfish players we've ever been around and is all about the team all the time," Michigan coach John Beilein said in a news release. "He's been a terrific leader."

Glenn "Big Dog" Robinson, GR3's father, was the overall No. 1 pick of the Bucks in the 1994 draft.

Their approach to the game is like day and night. GR3 has been criticized for his selfless play while Big Dog never met a shot he didn't like.

"When I see the open person, I'm hittin' 'em. I think it's kind of a blessing, a gift that I have, finding the open teammate," GR3 said. "I'm working on being more aggressive, finding my shot more. It's something I have to do no matter what team I'm on.

"My dad got quite a few shots off. I don't know where I got that (selflessness) from, maybe my mom."

Robinson III worked out for more than a dozen teams leading up to tonight's draft. McGary passed on the NBA Combine in Chicago while recovering from successful back surgery and worked out only for the Bucks.

McGary failed an at-random NCAA drug test last March and was suspended for the 2014-15 season, making his early departure from college inevitable.

"Mitch had a tremendous impact on our program from the moment he committed to us," Beilein said. "He injected an enthusiasm that cannot be matched.

"His willingness to face a personal issue head on and his positive work ethic during his recent injury have helped him grow in many ways."

If GR3 had taken out billboards coast to coast prior to tonight, the message would've been the same.

"Draft me because I'm an intelligent person. I'm not going to cause the team any problems. And most important, I can understand my role on a team and what I need to do to help the team –whether it's defense or offense," Robinson said.

"That's a long billboard, by the way."

The possibility of GR3 joining the Bucks is intriguing, given that his father starred there from 1994 to 2002.

"I remember going to practice when I was little and they actually let me on the floor to shoot, but I couldn't make it to the rim," said GR3. "But I got a chance to meet the guys, go in the locker room, hang around.

"I felt like I was a part of the team."

GR3 recalled his father playing against the Bulls and he and Michael Jordan both scoring 40 points, with MJ dunking on Big Dog, who went on to earn a ring with the Spurs his final season.

It's now time for GR3 to build memories of his own.

Mitch McGary's agent, Chicago-based Mark Bartelstein, had declined all interview requests until after the draft, adding he is "comfortable" with his client choosing not to undergo a pre-draft physical to test the surgically-repaired back.

"He's doing well. He's ready for the draft," Bartelstein said. "He's in a good place and excited about starting a new chapter in his life.

"Potentially, he has a chance to be terrific. His arrow's pointed up."

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