X avier Thames didn’t care where he was picked in Thursday’s NBA draft – he just wanted to be picked.
Thames, who played at Pleasant Grove High School and San Diego State, was selected by Toronto with the second-to-last pick, No. 59 overall, which surprised him because the Raptors were not one of the 16 teams for which the 6-foot-4 guard worked out. His draft rights were traded to the Brooklyn Nets, who are coached by Jason Kidd , a player Thames grew up watching.
“I’m ready,” said Thames, who will play for the Nets in the NBA summer league in Orlando, Fla., starting July 5.
Thames hopes to join two other players from the region in the NBA – Matt Barnes (Del Campo) of the Clippers and Ryan Anderson (Oak Ridge) of the Pelicans.
More hoops news
• Former Sacramento State guard John Dickson is off to a hot start for the Willetton Tigers of the Australia State Basketball League. Through 18 games, Dickson averaged 29.6 points, 10.2 rebounds, 2.2 steals and 2.2 assists. Dickson scored 1,313 points in four seasons with the Hornets, fifth in program history.
They’re on the move• Mark Massari , who played football at Sacramento State and was the athletic director at UC Santa Barbara for six years, has been hired as Oregon State’s deputy athletic director. Massari, who expressed interest in the vacant athletic director opening at Sac State, will be the Beavers’ athletic department chief marketing and revenue officer and oversee external affairs, strategic planning and development growth programs. He worked at Oregon State from 2002 to 2008 in various athletic roles.
• Lucas Moosman is the new dean of athletics and athletic director at Sierra College. Moosman, who has been the associate athletic director at San Diego State and has experience at the community college and Division III levels, starts in August.
• Kahlil McKenzie , son of Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie , has transferred from De La Salle in Concord to nearby Clayton Valley Charter, a rarity because the Spartans generally don’t lose high-profile players. Kahlil McKenzie, who is being recruited nationally, declined to discuss his move. Clayton Valley Charter was scheduled to play Carson of Carson City, Nev., in the Honor Bowl at Del Oro on Aug. 30, but the game was canceled after a Diablo Valley Athletic League panel learned the Ugly Eagles participated in three out-of-season practices and held an illegal scrimmage. The panel stripped the program of six practice days in August and, per North Coast Section rules, teams must have a minimum of 14 practice days before a season opener. Clayton Valley Charter is appealing. De La Salle opens its season Aug. 29 at Levi’s Stadium against Jesuit.
Changes at Cal
The best hire by outgoing Cal athletic director Sandy Barbour was men’s basketball coach Mike Montgomery , who retired after last season. Barbour’s most curious hire might be football coach Sonny Dykes , her hand-picked successor to Jeff Tedford . Dykes went 1-11 last season, his first year in Berkeley. Cal nearly landed area stars Shaq Thompson (Grant) and Arik Armstead (Pleasant Grove) in 2011 but lost both to rival programs, which in a way signaled the beginning of the end for Tedford.
Thompson gave a verbal commitment, then switched to Washington amid coaching changes at Cal. He’s a preseason All-America safety-linebacker. Armstead was set to go to Cal, too, but opted for Oregon, where he is expecting a breakout season on the defensive line.
Former Cal running back Mark Orr , a Christian Brothers graduate and longtime Saint Mary’s College athletic director, has been mentioned as a potential candidate to replace Barbour.