Pitt's Biggs, Fields looking for opportunities

| Sunday, June 21, 2009

Tyrell Biggs is catching a little spotlight of his own.

The former Pitt power forward toiled in the shadow of projected first-rounders DeJuan Blair and Sam Young but has earned the attention of some NBA scouts and general managers just the same.

At least one team, the Chicago Bulls, reportedly offered the 6-foot-8, 250-pound Biggs a spot on its summer-league team.

"Tyrell is a much better player than anyone has given him credit for," said Steve Kyler, publisher of Hoopsworld.com .

Biggs and former Pitt point guard Levance Fields aren't likely to get a call during the two-round NBA Draft on Thursday, but both should be playing for pro teams this summer.

Biggs, who averaged 6.4 points and 4.3 rebounds as a senior, trained last month with Blair and other likely first-round picks at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.

Since then, Biggs has excelled at a handful of NBA workouts, including one in Chicago against Tyler Hansbrough.

"He absolutely destroyed Hansbrough," Kyler said.

Said Biggs: "I did really well against him."

On Friday, Biggs attended a workout with the Oklahoma City Thunder, along with big men Dante Cunningham of Villanova, Taj Gibson of Southern California and Goran Suton of Michigan State.

"I did well," Biggs said. "I was a little off today. I can't be on all the time. But I played good (defense)."

The Nanuet, N.Y., native also worked out for Sacramento, Indiana and Chicago. He will wrap up his pre-draft visits in Portland on Monday and Memphis on Tuesday.

Portland, which has four second-round picks, needs a small forward/power forward.

Biggs didn't start at Pitt until his senior year, and he was asked to defend and rebound more by coach Jamie Dixon. He averaged only five shots a game, going scoreless in 2009 NCAA Tournament games against Xavier and Villanova.

But he has a good outside shooting touch, averaging nearly 40 percent from 3-point range (19 for 48).

"In these workouts, I get to show a lot of scouts what they didn't know I had," Biggs said.

Fields has worked out with his hometown Knicks, along with Sacramento, Utah and Milwaukee. The 5-foot-10 Fields, who has lost about 18 pounds in the offseason, also has possible meetings with New Jersey and Washington in the coming days.

"It's been a fun process," Fields told reporters last week. "All I can do is hope for the best. The feedback I'm getting is that everyone is excited with my workouts."

Provided he isn't drafted, Fields is committed to play for the Orlando Magic summer-league team. Fields might end up playing in Europe, following the path of former Pitt guards Carl Krauser and Antonio Graves.

"Levance isn't an NBA guy, but he will have a market," Kyler said. "He'll make six figures to play basketball. That's very real for him."

Kyler believes Biggs also can make a living playing in Europe but thinks he could end up in the NBA some day.

"I think we will see Tyrell Biggs in the league," Kyler said. "He's going to have to take the long way in, but good things should happen to him."

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