Add three more Ivy grads to the NBA G League.
Princeton’s Myles Stephens was the first to go off the board with the number 10 pick in the 2nd round of Saturday’s G League Draft by the Long Island Nets. Columbia’s Kyle Castlin, who completed a graduate transfer year at Xavier, was chosen with the 17th pick of the 2nd round by the Salt Lake City Stars. Yale’s Trey Phills went to the Windy City Bulls with 18th pick in the fourth and final round.
Stephens was a three-time All-Ivy guard, earning two first-team and one second-team selections. In 2016-17, Stephens was promoted to the starting lineup, helping the Tigers to a undefeated regular season title and Ivy Tournament championship. In the league’s first-ever postseason event, the Lawrenceville, N.J., native, scored 21 points on 9 of 18 from the field with 10 rebounds for his first career double-double in the semifinal against Penn and added 23 points on 8 of 14 from the field in the final against Yale. For his efforts, he was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
In his junior year, Stephens was fourth in the league in rebounding (6.3 rpg), fifth in minutes per game (34.4), sixth in field goal percentage (.520) and eighth in scoring (15.3 ppg), three-point field goal percentage (.412). Last year, Stephens led the Tigers with a career-high 6.4 rebounds per game and was second in scoring with 13.6 points per game. For his career, Stephens finished 10th in scoring with 1,346 points and rebounds with 561.
Stephens will now join fellow Tiger Devin Cannady, who was signed by the Brooklyn Nets and assigned to the team’s G League affiliate last week.
Castlin, a 6’4″ guard from Marietta, Georgia, started all 28 game in his first year at Columbia, averaging 10.3 points, 4.2 rebounds and 26.7 minutes per game. In his sophomore year of 2015-2016, he started only 15 of 31 games and his numbers dropped to 4.8 points, 2.5 rebounds and 17 minutes a contest.
After missing his junior year and 10 of the first 11 games of his senior year to injury, Castlin returned to average 10.5 points, 3.8 rebounds and 24.6 minutes per game. Following his graduation from Columbia in 2018, Castlin transferred to Xavier, where he was named a co-captain. He played in 35 games for the Musketeers, starting 24, averaging 4.3 points, 3.4 rebounds and 21.9 minutes per game.
Castlin will now be playing for the G League affiliate of the Utah Jazz, where he will team with Yale’s Miye Oni. The 2019 Ivy League Player of the Year was selected by the Jazz in the 2nd round of the 2019 NBA Draft, earning a two-year guaranteed contract. On Monday afternoon, Oni, who averaged 3.0 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.4 assists over five preseason games, was assigned to Salt Lake City, where he is expected to get a significant amount of playing time.
Phills, Oni’s teammate at Yale, played in 107 games, starting 79, over his career. He averaged 22.1 minutes and 6.8 points on 46.7 percent shooting during his four years with his best year coming in his junior season. That year, he was named to the All-Ivy second team after averaging 26.6 minutes and 9.7 points on 52.0 percent shooting.
The Charlotte, North Carolina, native’s calling cards were his on-the-ball defense and philanthropy. On the court, he earned the Bulldogs’ George McReynolds Award his last three seasons, as the team’s premier defender, and was named the Ivy League’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2018. Off the court, he was named to the NABC 2019 Give Back Team, which recognized 10 men’s student-athletes from across the nation for their outstanding community service efforts, and the recipient of Yale’s Ford Student-Athlete Community Outreach Award.
Phills will begin his effort to make it to the NBA, where his late father Bobby Phills played for Cleveland and Charlotte in a nine year career.
In other Ivy-related news, Leland King was chosen by the Raptors 905 with the 13th pick of the third round. King began his college career at Brown in 2013, when he averaged 9.6 points and 3.6 rebounds in his rookie year. In a 2014-2015 season where Sports Illustrated picked him as one of five sophomores poised for a breakout season, he increased his totals to 14.6 points and 7.8 rebounds a game.
King surprised many in the conference by transferring to Nevada for his junior year. He sat out the 2015-2016 season and totaled 3.7 points and 2.6 rebounds for the Wolfpack in his senior campaign. With one year of eligibility remaining, King went to UC Santa Barbara as a graduate transfer for 2017-18. In his one year with the Gauchos, he posted 15.6 points and 10.2 rebounds a game on his way to being named first team All-Big West. He spent last year playing professionally in Bosnia.
King will join the Raptors G-League team, where he will be paired with Cornell grad Matt Morgan, the Ivy League’s second-highest all-time scorer.