20 Best NBA Draft Picks from Michigan State

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Mar 6, 2014; East Lansing, MI, USA; General view of a basketball on the court prior to a game between the Michigan State Spartans and the Iowa Hawkeyes at Jack Breslin Student Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

24. . Round 1. Pick 11 (1972). Ralph Simpson. 7. player

Ralph Simpson was drafted into the NBA in 1972 by the Chicago Bulls, but he had already been playing professionally for two seasons in the ABA with the Denver Rockets, where he had signed after playing two seasons at Michigan State.

Simpson wouldn’t sign with the Bulls, instead electing to stay with Denver for four more seasons until the two leagues merged ahead of the 1976-77 season.

Simpson was named to five consecutive ABA All-Star teams in the prime of his career, being named to the squad every year from 1972 to 1976 (the final five seasons of the league’s existence).

I his ten seasons across the ABA and NBA, Simpson tallied more than 11,000 career points (11,785) — over 16.5 points per game — making him one of the most prolific scorers ever to come out of the Michigan State basketball program.

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