Denmon: “I’m better than the 59th pick”

Typically speaking, little is ever expected out of the No. 59 pick in the NBA draft.

That is fine by Marcus Denmon, the Missouri guard the Spurs selected with the draft’s second-to-last selection Thursday night.

“I feel I’m better than the 59th pick,” Denmon said.

When the Spurs’ one-man draft class arrives in San Antonio on July 5, the team’s brain trust — from general manager R.C. Buford and coach Gregg Popovich on down — will greet Denmon with one directive: Prove it.

Nobody questions Denmon’s credentials as a fill-it-up scorer. As a senior last season, Denmon averaged 17.7 points — tied for second in the Big 12 —  led Missouri to its second conference tournament championship in four years, and was named a second-team All-American.

A two-time first-team All-Big 12 selection, Denmon shot better than 40 percent from 3-point range over four college seasons, one of the most accurate marksmen in the country.

And yet there he was Thursday,  moments away from going undrafted.

Speaking with the Express-News via telephone from his hometown in Kansas City, Mo., on Friday afternoon, Denmon said he will use his long slide on draft night as motivation once he arrives in San Antonio.

“With my accolades and my body of work, I was still overlooked,” said Denmon, who next month will compete for the Spurs’ summer league team in Las Vegas. “I’m going in hungry and humble.”

And, perhaps, with a chip on his shoulder that could serve him well.

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