The 1998 NBA draft took place on June 24, 1998, at General Motors Place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. This draft helped turn around four struggling franchises: the Dallas Mavericks, the Sacramento Kings, the Boston Celtics, and the Toronto Raptors.

1998 NBA draft
General information
Date(s)June 24, 1998
LocationGeneral Motors Place (Vancouver, British Columbia)
Network(s)TNT, TSN
58 total selections in 2 rounds
First selectionMichael Olowokandi (Los Angeles Clippers)
← 1997
1999 →

The Vancouver Grizzlies and the Toronto Raptors were not able to win the NBA draft lottery; as they were expansion teams, they were not allowed to select first in this draft.

The Mavericks, despite having a talented nucleus of Jason Kidd, Jamal Mashburn and Jimmy Jackson in the mid-1990s, had not had a winning season since 1989-90, which was also the last time they made the playoffs. By the end of the 1997 season, all three players were traded and it was time to rebuild. With the sixth selection in 1998, they drafted Robert Traylor and quickly traded him to the Milwaukee Bucks for Dirk Nowitzki and Pat Garrity. They then traded Garrity in a package to the Phoenix Suns for Steve Nash. With Nash and Nowitzki, the Mavericks quickly went from a lottery team in the late 1990s to a perennial playoff contender throughout the 2000s. Nowitzki went on to win the 2011 NBA Finals with Dallas without Nash, but with Kidd.

Meanwhile, the Raptors were a recent expansion team that had failed to win more than 30 games in its first three seasons. With the fourth pick they selected Antawn Jamison, whom they quickly dealt to the Golden State Warriors for Vince Carter. Carter went on to win Rookie of the Year.

First overall pick Michael Olowokandi from mid-major University of the Pacific is regarded by Sports Illustrated as one of the biggest draft busts in NBA history.[1] As of February 2019, he is the last top selection to come out of a university that is considered mid-major.

Five players from the 1998 draft class played in the NBA All-Star Game at least once in their careers: Nowitzki, Carter, Jamison, Paul Pierce and Rashard Lewis. All of them except Lewis scored at least 20,000 career points.

Carter retired in 2020, making him the last active player drafted in the 1990s to retire. He set the record for most seasons played in the NBA with 22, becoming the first player to ever appear in NBA games in four different decades. Nowitzki missed the same four-decade status by nine months, retiring from the Mavericks in April 2019 as the first player to ever spend more than 20 NBA seasons with one team.

Draft selections

Antawn Jamison was selected 4th overall by the Toronto Raptors (traded to the Golden State Warriors).
Vince Carter was selected 5th overall by the Golden State Warriors (traded to the Toronto Raptors).
Dirk Nowitzki was selected 9th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks (traded to the Dallas Mavericks).
Paul Pierce was selected 10th overall by the Boston Celtics.
Rashard Lewis was selected 32nd overall by the Seattle SuperSonics.
PG Point guard SG Shooting guard SF Small forward PF Power forward C Center
^ Denotes player who has been inducted to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
* Denotes player who has been selected for at least one All-Star Game and All-NBA Team
+ Denotes player who has been selected for at least one All-Star Game
# Denotes player who has never appeared in an NBA regular season or playoff game
~ Denotes player who has been selected as Rookie of the Year
Round Pick Player Position Nationality[n 1] NBA team School/Club team
1 1 Michael Olowokandi C   Nigeria Los Angeles Clippers Pacific (Sr.)
1 2 Mike Bibby PG   United States Vancouver Grizzlies Arizona (So.)
1 3 Raef LaFrentz C/F   United States Denver Nuggets Kansas (Sr.)
1 4 Antawn Jamison+ F   United States Toronto Raptors (traded to Golden State) North Carolina (Jr.)
1 5 Vince Carter^~ SF/SG   United States Golden State Warriors (traded to Toronto) North Carolina (Jr.)
1 6 Robert Traylor F/C   United States Dallas Mavericks (traded to Milwaukee) Michigan (Jr.)
1 7 Jason Williams PG   United States Sacramento Kings Florida (Jr.)
1 8 Larry Hughes SG   United States Philadelphia 76ers Saint Louis (Fr.)
1 9 Dirk Nowitzki^ PF   Germany Milwaukee Bucks (traded to Dallas) DJK Würzburg (Germany, 2nd division)
1 10 Paul Pierce^ SF/SG   United States Boston Celtics Kansas (Jr.)
1 11 Bonzi Wells G/F   United States Detroit Pistons Ball State (Sr.)
1 12 Michael Doleac C   United States Orlando Magic Utah (Sr.)
1 13 Keon Clark F/C   United States Orlando Magic (from Washington via Golden State) UNLV (Sr.)
1 14 Michael Dickerson SG   United States Houston Rockets Arizona (Sr.)
1 15 Matt Harpring F/G   United States Orlando Magic (from New Jersey) Georgia Tech (Sr.)
1 16 Bryce Drew PG   United States Houston Rockets (from New York via Portland and Toronto) Valparaiso (Sr.)
1 17 Radoslav Nesterovič C   Slovenia Minnesota Timberwolves Kinder Bologna (Italy)
1 18 Mirsad Türkcan PF   Turkey Houston Rockets (from Portland via Toronto) Efes Pilsen (Turkey)
1 19 Pat Garrity PF   United States Milwaukee Bucks (from Cleveland, traded to Phoenix) Notre Dame (Sr.)
1 20 Roshown McLeod SF   United States Atlanta Hawks Duke (Sr.)
1 21 Ricky Davis G/F   United States Charlotte Hornets Iowa (Fr.)
1 22 Brian Skinner F/C   United States Los Angeles Clippers (from Miami) Baylor (Sr.)
1 23 Tyronn Lue PG   United States Denver Nuggets (from Phoenix traded to L.A. Lakers) Nebraska (Jr.)
1 24 Felipe López SG   Dominican Republic San Antonio Spurs (traded to Vancouver) St. John's (Sr.)
1 25 Al Harrington F   United States Indiana Pacers St. Patrick's High School (Elizabeth, New Jersey)
1 26 Sam Jacobson SG   United States Los Angeles Lakers Minnesota (Sr.)
1 27 Vladimir Stepania C   Georgia Seattle SuperSonics Olimpija Ljubljana (Slovenia)
1 28 Corey Benjamin SG   United States Chicago Bulls Oregon State (So.)
1 29 Nazr Mohammed C/F   United States Utah Jazz (traded to Philadelphia) Kentucky (Jr.)
2 30 Ansu Sesay SF   United States Dallas Mavericks (from Toronto) Mississippi (Sr.)
2 31 Ruben Patterson SF   United States Los Angeles Lakers (from Vancouver) Cincinnati (Sr.)
2 32 Rashard Lewis+ PF   United States Seattle SuperSonics (from Detroit) Alief Elsik HS (Houston, Texas)
2 33 Jelani McCoy F/C   United States Seattle SuperSonics (from L.A. Clippers) UCLA (Jr.)
2 34 Shammond Williams PG   United States Chicago Bulls (from Golden State) North Carolina (Sr.)
2 35 Bruno Šundov C   Croatia Dallas Mavericks Split (Croatia)
2 36 Jerome James C   United States Sacramento Kings Florida A&M (Jr.)
2 37 Casey Shaw C   United States Philadelphia 76ers Toledo (Sr.)
2 38 DeMarco Johnson PF   United States New York Knicks (from Boston) Charlotte (Sr.)
2 39 Rafer Alston PG   United States Milwaukee Bucks Fresno State (Jr.)
2 40 Korleone Young SF   United States Detroit Pistons Hargrave Military Academy
2 41 Cuttino Mobley SG   United States Houston Rockets Rhode Island (Sr.)
2 42 Miles Simon SG   United States Orlando Magic Arizona (Sr.)
2 43 Jahidi White F/C   United States Washington Wizards Georgetown (Sr.)
2 44 Sean Marks PF   New Zealand New York Knicks California (Sr.)
2 45 Toby Bailey SG   United States Los Angeles Lakers (from New Jersey) UCLA (Sr.)
2 46 Andrae Patterson SF   United States Minnesota Timberwolves Indiana (Sr.)
2 47 Tyson Wheeler PG   United States Toronto Raptors Rhode Island (Sr.)
2 48 Ryan Stack C   United States Cleveland Cavaliers South Carolina (Sr.)
2 49 Cory Carr SG   United States Atlanta Hawks Texas Tech (Sr.)
2 50 Andrew Betts# C   United Kingdom Charlotte Hornets Long Beach State (Sr.)
2 51 Corey Brewer# PG   United States Miami Heat Oklahoma (Sr.)
2 52 Derrick Dial SG   United States San Antonio Spurs Eastern Michigan (Sr.)
2 53 Greg Buckner SG   United States Dallas Mavericks (from Phoenix) Clemson (Sr.)
2 54 Tremaine Fowlkes SF   United States Denver Nuggets (from Indiana) Fresno State (Sr.)
2 55 Ryan Bowen SF   United States Denver Nuggets (from Seattle) Iowa (Sr.)
2 56 J. R. Henderson SF   United States Vancouver Grizzlies (from L.A. Lakers) UCLA (Sr.)
2 57 Torraye Braggs PF   United States Utah Jazz Xavier (Sr.)
2 58 Maceo Baston PF   United States Chicago Bulls Michigan (Sr.)
  1. ^ Nationality indicates the player's national team or representative nationality. If a player has not competed at the international level, then the nationality indicates the national team which the player is eligible to represent according to FIBA rules.

Notable undrafted players

Earl Boykins, a notable undrafted player, is known for being the second shortest player in NBA history.
Brad Miller was not drafted but had a successful 14-year career in the NBA that included two All-Star selections.
Šarūnas Jasikevičius was not drafted but later played in the NBA and is regarded as one of Europe's all-time greatest basketball players.

These players eligible for the 1998 NBA Draft were not selected but played at least one game in the NBA.

Player Position Nationality School/Club team
Earl Boykins PG   United States Eastern Michigan (Sr.)
Gerald Brown SG   United States Pepperdine (Sr.)
Anthony Carter PG   United States Hawaii (Sr.)
Sean Colson PG   United States Charlotte (Sr.)
Steve Goodrich PF/C   United States Princeton (Sr.)
Zendon Hamilton C   United States St. John's (Sr.)
Randell Jackson PF   United States Florida State (Jr.)
Mike James PG   United States Duquesne (Sr.)
Šarūnas Jasikevičius PG   Lithuania Maryland (Sr.)
Charles Jones SG   United States LIU Brooklyn (Sr.)
Mark Jones SF   United States UCF (Sr.)
Kelly McCarty SG   United States Southern Miss (Sr.)
Slava Medvedenko PF   Ukraine Budivelnyk Kiev (Ukraine)
Brad Miller+ C   United States Purdue (Sr.)
Makhtar N'Diaye PF   Senegal North Carolina (Sr.)
Tyrone Nesby SF   United States UNLV (Sr.)
Daniel Santiago C   Puerto Rico Saint Vincent (Sr.)
Jeff Sheppard G   United States Kentucky (Sr.)
Billy Thomas SG   United States Kansas (Sr.)
Óscar Torres SF/SG   Venezuela Marinos (Venezuela)

Early entrants


College underclassmen


The following college basketball players successfully applied for early draft entrance.[2]

High school players


The following high school players successfully applied for early draft entrance.[2]

International players


The following international players successfully applied for early draft entrance.[2]

See also



  1. ^ "Sports Illustrated photo gallery".
  2. ^ a b c "1998 Underclassmen". The Draft Review. August 4, 2007. Retrieved December 17, 2022.