NEW YORK – NBA fans will have the opportunity to welcome the next generation of stars as tickets for the 2012 NBA Draft go on sale today. The 2012 NBA Draft will again be held at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., on June 28. Tickets are priced at $15, $20 and $30 and will be available at ticketmaster.com or the Prudential Center Box Office.
The New Orleans Hornets will select first and 10th in this year’s draft. The Charlotte Bobcats will pick second, and the Washington Wizards, will pick third. The Brooklyn Nets came up sixth, but the pick was only protected if they made the top 3, so their selection goes to Portland as part of a trade. The Cavaliers will pick fourth, after nabbing Kyrie Irving with the top pick last year.
This marks the third time the NBA Draft is being held in New Jersey. The first was the 1996 Draft, which saw the Philadelphia 76ers select Georgetown’s Allen Iverson with the number one pick. Future All-Stars Ray Allen (fifth), Kobe Bryant (13th), Peja Stojakovic (14th), Steve Nash (15th), Jermaine O’Neal (17th), and Zydrunas Ilgauskas (20th) were also selected in the 1996 Draft.
Last year, New Jersey’s own Kyrie Irving (St. Patrick’s High School, Elizabeth, N.J.) and 2011-12 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year was selected with the first overall selection by the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The NBA Draft became a public event in 1979, and was held in various venues in New York City through 1991. It was held in Portland in 1992, followed by Detroit (1993), Indianapolis (1994), Toronto (1995), East Rutherford, N.J. (1996), Charlotte (1997), Vancouver (1998), Washington D.C. (1999), and Minneapolis (2000).
The NBA Draft returns to Prudential Center following the sold out 2011 Draft at the Rock. Located in downtown Newark, Prudential Center has welcomed more than 8 million visitors through its doors since opening in October 2007 and now ranks tenth overall in the highest grossing arenas worldwide for 2011, according to leading industry publication Venues Today. Prudential Center is home to the NHL’s 2011-2012 Eastern Conference Champion New Jersey Devils, the WNBA New York Liberty and Seton Hall University’s Men’s Basketball program.