Atlanta Hawks General Manger Landry Fields (red shirt) said of the recent additions to the team, “The potential for all three of these guys is really, really high.” Photo by Donnell Suggs/The Atlanta Voice

BROOKHAVEN, Ga.- The Atlanta Hawks introduced 2023 draft selections Kobe Bufkin, Mouhamed Gueye and Seth Lundy this morning at the Hawks practice facility, Emory Healthcare Courts. All three players were given their jerseys and addressed the media following a brief introduction by Hawks in-game announcer Bob Rathbun. 

Hawks General Manager Landry Fields spoke of this being his first draft as GM and his being excited to be sitting next to these particular players. “I’m really excited about the building blocks we have for the future,” Landry, who was the 39th overall selection to Toronto during the 2010 NBA draft, said. “The potential for all three of these guys is really, really high.” 

Bufkin, the 15th overall selection, mentioned that Hawks guard Dejounte Murray was the first player on the team to reach out following his being selected by the team. Both Mouhamed and Lundy said they also heard from Murray on draft night.

“He told me this is when the work starts,” Mouhamed said of Murray’s message on draft night. Mouhamed doubled his scoring average from his freshman season to his sophomore season at Washington State. There’s a good chance he can continue working on his offensive game while with the Hawks NBA G League affiliate College Park Skyhawks during the regular season.

Asked what he thinks he needs to work on to better his opportunities for playing time at the NBA level, Mouhammed said, “I think just working on my game overall. At this level you have to be able to shoot and space the floor. I think I have a lot of growing to do.”

Gueye, a 6-11 sophomore forward out of Washington State University, is happy to be in Atlanta and shared a story about the moment he found out he was drafted by Charlotte at pick 39 and later learned his draft rights had been traded to the Hawks. “I got the hat, then my agent called me and told me I was going to Atlanta,” Gueye, a native of Dakar, Senegal, told The Atlanta Voice. “I was like,” Thank God. I wanted to come to Atlanta and they wanted me too. That was a relief.” 

All three Hawks draft picks had worked out for the team prior to the draft. Lundy called draft night a night he won’t ever forget. “Honestly, it was the best day of my life.” There’s a video of him watching the draft with family and friends and finding out he was drafted that has gone viral.

Buffkin, who was joined at the press conference by his mother and family, said of his mentally during his time in high school and at the University of Michigan, “My mom always said play like the world is watching, so that’s what I’ve always tried to do.”

Hawks hold draft watch party, 6,500 show up

The Atlanta Hawks held a draft night party at State Farm Arena Thursday night and 6,500 fans were on hand to watch the team select Michigan sophomore Kobe Bufkin and Penn State senior forward Seth Lundy with their first round and second round picks, respectively.

Bufkin, a 6-foot-four guard from Grand Rapids, Michigan, was one of the key players on a very good Michigan team last season. A former McDonald’s All-American, Bufkin averaged 14 points and 4.5 rebounds per game in 33 games for the Wolverines last season.

Bufkin (left), like many basketball players born during the 2000’s, is named after the late NBA superstar and five-time champion Kobe Bryant.

Atlanta’s second round selection at pick 45 was New Jersey native Seth Lundy. A starter during his junior and senior seasons, Lundy started all 36 games this past season, averaging 31 minutes and 14 points per game. 

Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Donnell began his career covering sports and news in Atlanta nearly two decades ago. Since then he has written for Atlanta Business Chronicle, The Southern Cross...