O’Bryant to enter NBA Draft
by Andy Collier
Apr 04, 2014 | 3508 views | 0 0 comments | 50 50 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Johnny O’Bryant has succeeded on every level of basketball in his life.

Whether it was as a power forward on the high school level at East Side High School or as a forward at Louisiana State University, the 6-9, 260 pound Cleveland native has been an impact player.

Earlier this week, O’Bryant, 20, has decided its time for him to step his game up one more level as he announced that he will go into the NBA (National Basketball Association League) draft.

O’Bryant’s college career at LSU featured improvement every season as his points per game and field goal percentage went up each year. This past year was O’Bryant’s best offensively as he scored 15.4 points per game and shot 49.6 percent (203-of-409) from the floor, which were both career highs. He also a pulled down 7.7 rebounds a game.

O’Bryant’s success at LSU this past year gave him the reason he needed to pursue the NBA.

“I just felt like I had a great individual year,” O’Bryant said. “I got better from last year — a lot better. I just felt ready mentally and physically.”

In his high school career at East Side, he led the Trojans to two 3A State Tournament appearances, and named a McDonald’s All-American, a Parade Magazine All-American and third team center on USA Today’s All-USA Boys Basketball Team.

In 2009 and 2010, O’Bryant played on team USA during the FIBA Americas U16 Championship Tournament and the FIBA U17 World Championship Tournament and was instrumental in team USA winning the gold in each of those tournaments.

For his career at LSU, O’Bryant scored 1,157 points and recorded 702 rebounds, which makes him one of just 14 players in LSU history to score at least 1,000 points and record 700 rebounds in a career and one of just nine players in LSU history to earn all-SEC honors by the coaches in back-to-back years. He is 20th on LSU’s all-time rebounds list and 31st on the team’s all-time scoring list. He finished up averaging 12.7 points and 7.7 rebounds in 91 career games.

O’Bryant said his overall game vastly improved at LSU.

“I was always able to shoot the ball, but other skills like attacking the basket, passing out of a double-team, knocking down mid-range shots consistently improved,” O’Bryant said. “I am became an overall better player.”

According to O’Bryant, he has a good shot to go possibly late in the first round or early in the second round. According to www.draftexpress.com, O’Bryant is projected to go in the second round according to its mock draft. The NBA draft will take place on June 26.

O’Bryant said getting in the position he’s in hasn’t been easy, and he knows to have a shot at the NBA he can’t ease up.

“I just have to keep working hard, and it’s definitely a dream of mine,” O’Bryant said about his goal of play in the NBA. “I just have to keep working hard and keep believing in God and just know everything will work out.”