- Scott Powers, Reporter
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Paul, a 6-foot-4, 201-pound shooting guard, has previously worked out for the Bulls, Minnesota Timberwolves, Phoenix Suns, Portland Trail Blazers, Memphis Grizzlies, Houston Rockets and New York Knicks leading up to the draft on Thursday. He most recently worked out with the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday.
ESPN NBA draft analyst Chad Ford has Paul ranked No. 70 on his top-100 draft list and expects Paul to either be drafted in the second round or go undrafted.
The Bulls select in the first round at No. 20 overall and in the second round at No. 49 overall.
According to a league source, Paul has the potential to be drafted in the second round because of his shooting ability.
“The draft is right around the NBA Finals, and if you’re a wing player and not a shooter in the last couple of years, it’s been hard to get on the floor in the NBA Finals unless you’re someone like Tony Allen or a defensive freak,” the source said.
“Listen, everyone missed on [San Antonio Spurs guard] Gary Neal. When [general managers] miss on guys in the NBA, they’re oversensitive when another player like that comes around. They don’t want to miss a second time. [Paul] was a top-five, top-seven [player] in the Big Ten and can shoot it. They want to make sure he’s not overlooked.”
Paul averaged 16.6 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.2 steals and shot 40.1 percent from the field and 32.5 percent from 3-point range during his senior season at Illinois last year. He scored 35 points on 10-of-16 shooting in a win over Gonzaga as a senior and had 43 points on 11-of-15 shooting against Ohio State as a junior.
Paul grew up in the Chicago suburb of Gurnee, Ill., and was selected as Illinois’ Mr. Basketball out of Warren High School in 2009.
Former Illinois guard Brandon Paul has been invited to a second workout with the Chicago Bulls on Monday prior to the NBA draft, according to Paul’s mother.