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Top Secret Fyles: Intrigue abounds about NBA draft selections for ex-SU hoops stars

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From the drawers of the Top Secret Fyles:

While former Syracuse University star C.J. Fair tours the NBA workout circuit, ex-teammates Tyler Ennis and Jerami Grant are thinking higher with the league’s draft set for Thursday.

Fair worked out for the Clippers, Jazz and Mavericks last week in hopes of impressing a team if he’s not drafted. The Orange’s top scorer in each of the past two seasons is not projected to be taken in the two-round draft, according to leading NBA draft experts.

Six of the top 10 mock draft websites have Ennis going as the 20th overall pick to the Raptors. That could be a good fit for the dynamic point guard, joining a young-and-upcoming team that won the Atlantic Division this past season with a 48-34 record.

Because Ennis is a Canadian, he would be an instant drawing card for the Raptors.

NBA Draft Room projects Ennis as the 11th pick by the Nuggets — that’s the highest forecast — while he is at No. 25 by the Rockets, the lowest projection among the 10 mock drafts.

The former freshman directed the Orange’s 25-0 overall start last season before declaring himself eligible for the draft.

While Ennis seems like a certain first-rounder, Grant’s selection can bridge between the first or second rounds, according to the experts.

The highest projection for the ex-SU power forward is 18th by the Suns according to NBA Draft Room, while two draft boards target Grant to be taken 26th by the Heat and two more see him being picked 27th by the Suns. Phoenix has two selections in the first round. Four other sites project Grant as a non-first-round pick.

Hard to believe baseball statistic: Three-time AL batting champion and 2009 AL MVP Joe Mauer of the Twins has only two RBIs in 151 plate appearances in 33 road games this season. The former catcher-turned-first baseman is hitting .261 with 2 home runs and 22 RBIs in 68 games overall.

Here’s another mystery: The Syracuse Chiefs of the International League have the best overall record among Triple-A teams this season at 47-30, but they are last among 14 teams in attendance. The Chiefs are averaging 3,008 paid fans per game over 34 dates. The team is on target for its worst attendance in NBT Bank Stadium’s 18-year history.

Trivia answer: Derek Jeter (Yankees), David Wright (Mets), Jimmy Rollins (Phillies), Ichiro Suzuki (Mariners) and Carl Crawford (Rays).

Richie Rich’s Top 10 rankings in Major League Baseball: 1. Athletics; 2. Giants; 3. Brewers; 4. Tigers; 5. Dodgers; 6. Blue Jays; 7. Angels; 8. Nationals; 9. Braves; 10. Royals.

Times sports copy editor Richard Fyle can be reached at rfyle@wdt.net

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