Former Wolf Pack player, Criswell, preps for NBA G-League draft |

Former Wolf Pack player, Criswell, preps for NBA G-League draft

By Carter Eckl

For former Nevada Wolf Pack basketball player Tyron Criswell, the NBA G-League draft Saturday will represent a chance to excel at one final level.

Criswell, who has been playing professionally overseas for the last few years, spent two years with the Nevada Wolf Pack where he was named MVP of the College Basketball Invitational (CBI) as Nevada became the first Mountain West school to capture a CBI title.

Criswell averaged 21.3 points and eight rebounds per game over the course of the CBI.

Criswell was also named as the Mountain West Sixth Man of the Year, following his senior season with the Wolf Pack under then-head coach Eric Musselman.

The Omaha, Nebraska, native has worked his way through successes from high school to community college where he was the NJCAA Div. II player of the year while playing at Central College in Columbus, Nebraska.

Most recently, Criswell was on a U.S Tour playing in China and throughout Asia, posting nearly 30 points per game while trying to help gain exposure prior to the draft.

“He really dominated,” said his agent Dana Smith. “He also played over in Thailand for two weeks about three weeks ago.”

Smith, who is based in Carson City, said that not only was Criswell putting up numbers, but the former Wolf Pack guard was gaining significant interest from teams in Europe.

“There are teams we’re talking to overseas,” said Smith. “There’s a Bosnian team that has offered him a contract.”

While impressing teams overseas gives Criswell options, his goal is to rejoin the ranks of the NBA come Saturday.

In 2016, Criswell was drafted by the G-League’s Reno Bighorns before being released after a hand injury.

Criswell had garnered G-League interest following his stint with the Bighorns, working out for the Stockton Kings a few times.

For Criswell the move to the G-League comes just months after the birth of his son TJ or Tyron Criswell Jr., who was born in late July.

Criswell has also been working out at University of Nevada facilities in an effort to stay at the top of his game.

“To stay in shape, to stay healthy,” said Smith. “We were working on his shot a little bit. … We’ve just been working on his rhythm and his shot consistency.”

Smith added that breaking back into the NBA’s G-League is more than just a talent issue as making headway in many facets is required in order to get into the draft.

“I owe a lot of that credit to the director of operations for the Texas Legends, Al Whitley,” said Smith. “It’s all about who you know and timing.”

With just a few days remaining before the draft itself, Smith is as confident as ever Criswell can make an impact if he’s given a chance.

“I know if he gets drafted, he’s going to make a team,” said Smith.

The NBA G-League draft will start at 10 a.m. Saturday and will feature four rounds, consisting of a total of 112 picks for 28 teams.