Follow the Nets' return to New York with Newsday's Rod Boone.
Tyshawn Taylor glad to be on board, says he's matured
Tyshawn Taylor is still in a post-draft fog and loving every minute of it.
As a Hoboken, N.J., native who grew up watching Nets and Knicks games, he couldn't be more thrilled to have been selected by Brooklyn with the 41st pick of last night's NBA Draft. Originally saddled with just the 57th pick, the Nets moved up to get the 6-4, 185-pound guard, trading with Portland so they could make him the franchise's first draftee since officially relocating back to New York.
"It’s an amazing feeling," Taylor said Friday. "It's kind of unreal still. It hasn't really sunk in yet, but I’m happy to be here. I’m happy to be a Net.
"I felt like I’m a little part of history," he added, "so I’m excited about that."
Taylor, who started in three of his four seasons at Kansas, is eager for a little something else: he's salivating at the opportunity to show he should have been taken in the first round. He's going to make a list -- and probably check it at least twice.
"I think it's a lot of motivation," Taylor said. "I’m definitely taking notes of the point guards that were picked in front of me.
"As a player and as confident player. I think I could have went in the first round or I should have. But I’m happy with where I’m at, and I’d rather be in a better situation than be picked early and be in not such a good situation. So I'm happy."
Taylor, 22, has gone through a lot in his life, living in a homeless shelter for a portion of his youth. He also grew up without much interaction with his father, leaving his mother Jeanelle to raise him.
Taylor was involved in a fight with members of the Jayhawks' football team in September of 2009, dislocating his thumb. He's written some things on social media that coach Bill Self didn't like, and was also suspended twice in 2011 for unspecified team rules violations.
He said he's put that behind him and will use it as a valuable lesson.
"I've matured a lot," Taylor said. "Four years at a program like Kansas, playing in that system, playing under a great coach -- I grew as a person. I grew as a player and I’m just ready to make the next steps in my life. I think the draft is just one step in me showing my maturity and moving on."
But Taylor admitted he traveled a rough road at times in Lawrence, Kansas.
"Yeah, it was tough," he said. "I think four years of college, you just go through certain things and I think it’s all for growing and learning from your mistakes. I think that’s what I tried to do my time there.
"I don't think I would take anything back," he added, "I think mistakes are going to come, and I feel like better sooner than later because I feel like I probably would have made all those mistakes anyway. I feel like I got them out of my system and I was able to grow from them and just be a better person.
"I’m just looking forward to moving forward."