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NBA combine: NCAA rules prevented Michigan's Nik Stauskas from taking on Steph Curry in 3-point contest

Published May 16, 2014 8:21 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Chicago • Nik Stauskas wasn't about to back down from a 3-point shooting contest.Even if the challenge came from one of the best shooters in the world.The Michigan guard helped make a name for himself by making YouTube videos of his game. In one he posted last year, Stauskas made 46 3-pointers in a row.He posted the video online and was getting some reaction from fans. After a while, his Twitter mentions went crazy. The reason: Warriors guard Stephen Curry had retweeted him and challenged him to a shootout."I'm always game for a 3-point challenge," the affable Stauskas told reporters Friday at the NBA's pre-draft combine.So was Curry.The All-Star guards representatives made contact with Stauskas and set a plan in motion. The two were going to compete in Stauskas' backyard in Canada.TSN, the Canadian sports channel, wanted to broadcast it.Then, it fell apart."We tried to do it but the NCAA had some restrictions with playing against a professional and having a competition," Stauskas said.The contest was supposed to happen in July."My dad was going to shovel the court and everything," Stauskas joked.The sharpshooter won't have to worry about NCAA violations anymore. After averaging 17.5 points per game (while shooting better than 44 percent from 3) last season at Michigan, Stauskas is projected to be taken in the middle of the first round in June.Utah was not one of the teams Stauskas met with this week in Chicago. But if Jazz officials had, they would have been sitting down with one of the more enjoyable interviews at the event. Stauskas was engaging and genuinely funny as he chatted with reporters.When he was told one unnamed player had little faith in his vertical leap, Stauskas laughed."No one expects anything from white guys," he joked.On Friday, Stauskas held his own. He had the fifth best time in the lane agility drill (10.79 seconds) and had a respectable 35.5 max vertical leap and a 29-inch standing vertical.As for that 3-point contest with Curry? Stauskas says he's still open to the idea."He's not beating me in my backyard. It's my court, man," he said.— Aaron Falk

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