http://espn.go.com/nba/preview2013/story/_/id/9869481/victor-oladipo-path-orlando-magicIt's NBA draft day 2013, and Victor Oladipo, sharply dressed in a gray three-piece suit with a lavender shirt and black tie, keeps staring into space. At least that's what his twin sister Victoria told him, because Victor was too deep in thought to realize it.
He's sitting at a table surrounded by his three sisters, his mother and his agent. His father, Chris, known for his mysterious methods and regular absences, is surprisingly present also, sitting amongst the crowd, though he won't be staying for long.
The man Oladipo calls his godfather -- his first AAU coach, Kingston Price -- is there, too, seated close to the elder Oladipo. A handful of other friends are there as well, ready to experience the surreal.
Victor Oladipo was meant to be in that space, surrounded by anxious, soon-to-be NBA players and their gleaming family members. He was meant to walk across that stage, don an NBA cap and shake the hand of commissioner David Stern.
He just never knew it. Almost until the moment Stern announced Oladipo as the second overall selection of the Orlando Magic, the 21-year-old never really thought he'd live up to the goal he set when he was 5, watching the NBA on the television and deciding that was his future.
To Oladipo, nothing about his path said NBA. Not his overly skeptical father, who showed support in the most unique of ways. Not a high school career that saw him playing behind his more polished friends until his senior season. Not even his collegiate career that began with way too many losses and ended with a loss that momentarily took all his strength.
But there he was, at the Barclays Center, his name being called at the same draft position that current and former greats like Jerry West, Bill Russell, Wes Unseld, Bob McAdoo, Isiah Thomas, Jason Kidd and Kevin Durant were chosen.
Other than a very specific gesture to the crowd, what happened after Stern called his name was something of a blur to Oladipo.
And everything that led up to that point came rushing back.
"It was a crazy feeling," Oladipo said, sitting in a near-empty restaurant in downtown Orlando, Fla., his eyes wandering off as he speaks, taking himself right back to draft night. "I was watching the draft for as long as I could remember. Watching people walk across that stage. To say that I just did that? There was no way.
"For me to be where I came from, I'm not supposed to be here. And with all the guys I used to hang around with? I was not supposed to be the first one."