From AP REPORTS
NEW YORK (AP) - The Greg Oden-Kevin Durant debate that lasted all spring will end quickly Thursday night.
Then the NBA draft gets interesting.
Oden and Durant will be gone after the first two picks, headed to their Pacific Northwest destinations. No worries about going to an unfamiliar place, or lengthy waits while TV cameras capture their agony as teams pass over them.
Other players only wish they had it as easy.
"It is annoying. I wish I was in a situation like Greg and Kevin were in, where they just automatically knew where they were going," guard and longtime Oden teammate Mike Conley Jr. said. "They can start looking for houses or whatever. I have no kind of luxury like that."
Conley could go No. 3 to Atlanta _ unless the Hawks trade the pick. Or he could still be available when the Hawks use their second lottery selection at No. 11 _ unless that one has been dealt.
Al Horford, Joakim Noah and Corey Brewer, the core of Florida's back-to-back national championship teams; Georgetown forward Jeff Green, and China's Yi Jianlian face the same uncertainty heading into one of the deepest drafts in years, one that could be shaken up by trades.
"I don't think a lot of people put a lot of focus on that, after the first two draft picks, because it's going to be fun to see where people end up," Green said. "There's a lot of talent in the draft. In my eyes, we feel like maybe the deepest draft since LeBron's draft (in 2003)."
The Portland Trail Blazers have the No. 1 pick, and they haven't said publicly which way they're leaning. And if they were still flip-flopping Wednesday, they weren't the only ones.
"I'm taking the big guy," Washington center Spencer Hawes said when asked what he would do. "Look who wins the championships. Nothing against Kevin, but you just got to look at the backbone of championships."
So then, Oden over Durant?
"I'm not saying that, I'm not going to go that far," Hawes said. "Conventional wisdom would say that you take the big guy, but that's a tossup, that's a tough one to say. I can't say on the two individuals, but next year if it's a similar scenario I guess I go with the big guy. But I don't know, this year I guess I'm a man divided."
It's not an easy choice. Oden tested better at predraft camp, Durant had the sharper workout in Portland. Dominant big men are usually impossible to pass up, and late Wednesday night ESPN.com reported, citing unidentified sources, the Trail Blazers had let Oden know that he's their man.