NEW YORK -- Syracuse guard Andy Rautins became the first Canadian selected in the NBA draft since 2006 when the New York Knicks picked him in the second round Thursday.
"It's so close to home, growing up a Knicks fan, playing in the (Madison Square) Garden. . . I'm on top of the world right now," Rautins told The Canadian Press from him home in Syracuse, N.Y.
The son of national team coach and NBA player Leo Rautins, he averaged 12.1 points and 4.89 assists in 35 games for the Orangemen last season. He said he started to believe over the past couple of seasons that the NBA was a reality.
"I think the end of my junior year, I had a pretty good season, I was becoming a leader and a play-maker and maybe the NBA took notice," Rautins said.
The 23-year-old did most of his damage from long range, making 98-of-241 three-point attempts (40.7 per cent).
Rautins, a member of the Canadian national team, finished his career at Syracuse ranked second in three-point field goals made (282) and attempted (754).
He was the 38th overall pick and joins a Knicks team expected to undergo a massive overhaul.
The last Canadian taken in the NBA draft was Denham Brown, who was picked in the second round of the 2006 draft by the Seattle SuperSonics.
Leo Rautins was the first Canadian ever picked in the first round, going 17th overall to the Philadelphia 76ers in 1983.