Former Buff Alec Burks traded to the Detroit Pistons

Alec Burks was traded to the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday, marking his seventh NBA team

Former Colorado Buffaloes great Alec Burks will be playing for a new NBA team come next season. The New York Knicks sent Burks and center Nerlens Noel to the Detroit Pistons to free up cap space for a run at Jalen Brunson.

Burks is coming off ankle surgery this offseason but could provide solid guard play to a team in desperate need of it. The shooting guard has always been able to light it up from outside, and Burks is coming off a season in which he averaged 11.7 points per game and shot an impressive .404% from 3-point range.

Since his last season with the Buffs in 2010-11, Burks has now been on seven different NBA teams.

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Jabari Walker shows off his new summer league threads

Jabari Walker revealed his new number for the Blazers’ summer league team

The Colorado Buffaloes are celebrating after watching Jabari Walker be selected in the second round of the 2022 NBA draft by the Portland Trail Blazers.

Walker is headed for NBA Summer League and has a terrific shot to earn a spot on the Blazers roster, although the recent Damian Lillard-Kevin Durant rumors might change a lot of things.

Nonetheless, Walker showed off his new threads for the Summer League, and the former Buffs star will be wearing No. 34. First-round pick Shaedon Sharpe also sported his new jersey and jersey number, and a new chapter is beginning in Portland with these additions. This summer league squad might be fun to watch.

Walker waited a while to hear his name called on Thursday night, but just two picks before the end, the Blazers fulfilled his dream of becoming an NBA player.

The selection of Walker was seen as a steal by many, and he was expected to be a second-round pick, although certainly not that late.

The new chapter is here for Walker and let’s see how he performs in the Summer League starting July 7.

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BREAKING: Jabari Walker selected 57th overall by Chauncey Billups’ Portland Trail Blazers

Jabari Walker is headed to Portland

Jabari Walker has been drafted into the NBA!

The former Colorado Buffaloes star was drafted 57th overall by the Portland Trail Blazers and will play under another former Buff, Chauncey Billups.

2021 was a down year for Portland and Walker will hopefully have a chance to get playing time with a rebuilding team that still houses one of the best players in the league, Damian Lillard.

Walker’s defensive prowess, as well as his rebounding and outside shooting, will be a welcome addition to the Trail Blazers. They were near the bottom of the league in defensive rebounding, free-throw shooting and blocked shots, while ranking only middle of the road in 3-point shooting. Joining Walker in Portland is seventh overall pick Shaedon Sharpe out of Kentucky.

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How would Jabari Walker’s skills translate to the NBA?

How do you see Jabari Walker’s skills translating to the NBA?

As Walker and the rest of Buff nation wait for Thursday’s NBA draft to begin, The Athletic’s Sam Vecenie released his top-100 draft prospects. Colorado’s star forward was at No. 49, which would get him safely into the second round.

Jabari Walker, while still young, has his work cut out for him to be a reliable NBA player, especially on the offensive end. But with his size and spot-up shooting ability that I’ve seen Walker display, to go along with what looks to be a well-rounded defensive game, he can buy himself some time to refine himself.

His talent is certainly plentiful, but work remains for him and almost any college player looking to get drafted.

Here’s what Vecenie wrote regarding how Walker would be received into the NBA (h/t The Athletic):

What role can Walker fill on offense? That’s ultimately the big question. He’s a good shooter, but he’s streaky enough to where
he’s not a good enough shooter to not do anything else on that end and make it. Essentially, you have to buy into him being able
to add some further functional ability as a driver or finisher. He’s much more interesting if you felt like he could be a versatile
roll man off pick-and-rolls or pick-and-pops. Or if he could make short-roll passing reads. Or if he could functionally attack
closeouts to where he can either drive to kick or drive to score. He can’t do any of that right now. He’s still a teenager, so there
is some real time for him to add these skills. And his defensive versatility mixed with his size and potential to shoot it only off
the catch could give him enough time to figure the rest of it out. There’s a chance Walker is a useful forward defender who can
knock down shots at some point. But it’s very theoretical until he becomes more comfortable on offense. He’s on the borderline
of being a guarantee guy or a two-way for me.

Walker finished his Colorado career as a 39.9% 3-point shooter with a respectable .783 mark from the stripe. The shooting ability is definitely there and could go a long way towards convincing an NBA GM to take a chance on him. I see Walker contributing as an intriguing 3-and-D type prospect while he grows into the NBA game.

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Jabari Walker’s strengths and weaknesses discussed by The Athletic ahead of NBA draft

The Athletic broke down Jabari Walker’s strengths and weaknesses ahead of the NBA draft

Jabari Walker has been a hot commodity this draft cycle, working out for multiple teams in preparation for Thursday’s NBA draft. Walker had a solid Colorado career, perhaps highlighted by a 24-point performance in the Buffaloes’ first-round March Madness game against Georgetown his freshman season.

The Buffs’ leading scorer and rebounder of this last season, Walker declared for the NBA draft and will be looking to hear his name called Thursday night. But what makes Walker so appealing to NBA franchises? The Athletic’s Sam Vecenie recently profiled Walker as part of his 2022 NBA draft guide.

First of all, Vecenie loved Walker’s physical attributes (h/t The Athletic):

At 6-foot-8 with a 6-foot-11 wingspan and an 8-foot-9 standing reach, Walker has good size and length for the four position. Plays
with real twitch and light on his feet. Also has good functional strength. Was not very flexible as an athlete as a freshman but has
improved in a big way there.

I buy Walker as a shooter for the most part. Clean release with good touch as a teenager. Good shot prep. Ready to one-two step
into the shot. Gets a good base underneath him and sets to fire. Really good as a trailer when he can step into it.

Walker’s length is what stood out during his Colorado career and here we see Vecenie touching upon that. As the old adage goes, you can’t teach size, and Walker has both the height and wingspan to be an NBA four. It doesn’t hurt that Walker grew up around the game with his dad Samaki Walker playing in the NBA as well.

With the good must also come the bad; Vecenie was not as impressed with Walker’s offensive game:

Outside of the jumper, I don’t see a ton that is all that translatable as an offensive player. The shot might be enough, but Walker has a way to go at all three levels.

Not a good enough finisher for what his tools are. Made 52.8 percent of his shots at the rim this past season, a well below-average number for someone this big. Can dunk out on the break or out of the dunker spot, but he’s a significant load-up athlete at the rim.

Walker will need to round out his offensive abilities as mentioned above. Given his length, you would think he would be a more polished finisher around the rim, but based on his shooting percentage noted above, he has a lot to improve on.

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PHOTOS: Former Buffs in the NBA Finals

LOOK: Buffs in the NBA Finals through the years

We’ve been keeping close tabs on Derrick White throughout the NBA playoffs and it was great to see him drop 21 points in Game 1 of the finals on Thursday. White’s Boston Celtics are now just three wins away from winning their 18th NBA championship.

If Boston does close things out, White would become just the fourth former Colorado men’s basketball player to earn a ring: Scott Wedman won two with the Celtics (1984, 1986), Matt Bullard helped the Houston Rockets win in 1994 and, of course, Chauncey Billups earned NBA Finals MVP for the Detroit Pistons in 2004.

With all that history in mind, let’s take a photographic look back at former Buffaloes in the NBA Finals.

Derrick White drops 21 points in NBA Finals debut

Derrick White led the charge off the Celtics’ bench in Game 1

The Boston Celtics kicked things off with a Game 1 NBA Finals victory over the Golden State Warriors.

The Celtics came into the Bay Area and stunned the Dubs in terrific fashion, walking out with a 120-108 victory.

Jaylen Brown and Al Horford led the way as Jayson Tatum struggled and went just 3-for-17 from the field, although he did add 13 assists.

However, former Colorado Buffaloes star Derrick White paced the way off the bench with 31 minutes. He finished the game with 21 points on 6-of-11 from the field, including an impressive 5-for-8 clip from beyond the arc. White even played more minutes than Marcus Smart and was an essential piece to the Boston victory.

Once again, the NBA trade deadline deal with the San Antonio Spurs is paying off in a massive way for the Celtics and for White, who has transitioned into his role rather well.

It looked rough for the Celtics going into the third quarter, but they outscored the Warriors 40-16 in the final frame, and White hit a couple of huge shots down the stretch.

So, White and the Celtics take a crucial 1-0 lead with Game 2 scheduled for Sunday in the Bay Area before the series moves to Boston.

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Which Splash Brother will Derrick White guard in the NBA Finals?

Who do you think Derrick White will guard in the NBA Finals?

For the first time since Chauncey Billups helped the Detroit Pistons win a ring in 2004, a former Colorado men’s basketball player is headed to the NBA Finals. Derrick White, who was traded midseason from San Antonio to Boston, will represent the Buffs on basketball’s biggest stage.

Here’s what White, a former Division 2 player at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, had to say about reaching the finals (h/t 104.3 The Fan):

“It’s pretty crazy. It’s something that you dream about as a kid, watch growing up, and kind of look back on it. Going to try to think about it, but right now, I’m just trying to stay in the moment. Try to enjoy as much as I can, but understand that once the ball goes up, it’s really just basketball, and we got to get we got to find a way to get four wins.”

In the Eastern Conference Finals, White scored 14 points in Game 5 to help the Celtics eventually move past the Miami Heat. But things will only get more difficult for White and Boston’s backcourt with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Jordan Poole waiting for the Golden State Warriors.

So, who will White match up against? According to Trevor Haas of Celtics Blog, a White-Poole showdown is worth keeping an eye on:

Derrick White and Jordan Poole are going to have some entertaining battles. People are talking a lot about Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, for good reason, but they seem to forget that the Warriors are basically the Splash Triplets now. Poole is electric with the ball, and if White is the one on him at times, winning that matchup is critical. He doesn’t need to limit Poole entirely, but he can’t let him get hot. When Poole is on fire, the Warriors often are as well. On offense, White needs to continue to penetrate and look for those in-between shots. He doesn’t need to force 3’s and doesn’t need to stop shooting them altogether. Just make the right play, like he has been the majority of the time.

Another potential matchup for White is with Curry. Jake Shapiro of 104.3 The Fan wrote on Wednesday that White will likely guard the future hall of famer.

As for Thompson, I would say that considering his height and playstyle, White probably won’t be facing up against him.

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Derrick White shines for Celtics in huge Game 5 win over Heat

Derrick White helped the Boston Celtics in a massive way as they clinched the Game 5 victory over the Miami Heat.

The Boston Celtics are now one victory away from a trip to the NBA Finals and a likely berth against the Golden State Warriors.

With the series tied up at two games apiece, the pressure was on the Celtics more than the Miami Heat — especially with the game being in South Beach.

This time, it wasn’t Jaylen Brown or Jayson Tatum who were the difference-makers. Instead, it was former Colorado Buffaloes star Derrick White.

White has provided the Celtics with steady reserve minutes since coming over at the NBA Trade Deadline via a deal with the San Antonio Spurs. But, his best performance came when the Celtics needed it most.

White finished with 14 points on 6-8 from the field and five assists in 29 minutes off the bench. For perspective, he played more minutes than Marcus Smart and Robert Williams.

After the victory, veteran Al Horford raved about White in what was a common discussion.

Brown also made sure to give White credit for the masterful performance.

Yes, Brown and Tatum combined for 47 points and Horford chipped in 16. But it was White’s play that really put Boston over the edge.

The Celtics now look to clinch the Eastern Conference title at home on Friday night, and White will once again have a massive role.

WATCH: Forever Buff Spencer Dinwiddie lights it up for Mavs in Game 7

WATCH: Spencer Dinwiddie hit four 3-pointers in a monster first half for the Mavericks in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals

Spencer Dinwiddie is lovin’ his new team in Dallas.

Yes, it would be nice to see the former Colorado Buffaloes great start a few more games, but his first half performance coming off the bench in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals was one for the ages.

Dinwiddie shot 7-for-10 from the field, including 4-for-5 from deep, to finish the half with 21 points. Combined with Luka Doncic’s 27 points, the Mavs built a commanding 57-27 halftime lead over the No. 1 seed Phoenix Suns. Who saw that coming?

While the Mavericks (assuming they hold on) still must get through Golden State, Dinwiddie in the NBA Finals would be great for CU basketball.

But first, check out a few of his monster 3-pointers from the first half:

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