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S. Korean NBA hopeful Lee Hyun-jung suffers foot injury before draft

All News 18:58 June 17, 2022

By Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, June 17 (Yonhap) -- South Korean basketball player Lee Hyun-jung has suffered a foot injury a week before the draft in the National Basketball Association (NBA), his management company said Friday.

An official with the South Korean sports marketing firm A2G said Lee sustained the injury during practice, without elaborating on the extent of the injury. The result of the test Lee took is expected Tuesday, the official added.

After finishing his junior season with Davidson College Wildcats in April, Lee declared for the NBA draft, which is scheduled for next Thursday in Brooklyn, or Friday morning in Seoul. The 6-foot-7 wing averaged a career-high 15.8 points and six rebounds per game in the 2021-22 season, en route to making the Atlantic 10 All-Conference First Team.

In this Getty Images file photo from May 17, 2022, South Korean player Lee Hyun-jung takes part in the NBA G League Elite Camp at Wintrust Arena in Chicago. (Yonhap)

As a sophomore, Lee became the first Wildcat to put up the coveted 50-40-90 shooting numbers: 50.8 percent from the field, 44.2 percent from the three-point range and 90 percent from the free throw line.

Pundits see him as a fringe second-round candidate who will most likely sign a two-way contract, a deal often awarded to undrafted players. Salaries for these players depend on whether they play in the NBA or in the second-tier G League.

Lee had been working out with G-League teams in the buildup to the draft.

He comes from a basketball family. His mother, Seong Jeong-a, helped South Korea win the silver medal at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. His father, Lee Yun-hwan, played semi-pro hoops in the 1980s and has been a prominent high school coach since retiring in 1991.

Lee is trying to become only the second South Korean to play in the NBA, after the former Portland Trail Blazers center Ha Seung-jin. Ha, a 7-foot-3 center, was selected 46th overall by the Blazers in the 2004 draft and appeared in 46 games across two seasons. Ha averaged 1.5 points and 1.5 rebounds per game in the NBA.

In this Getty Images file photo from May 17, 2022, South Korean player Lee Hyun-jung takes part in the NBA G League Elite Camp at Wintrust Arena in Chicago. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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