Thursday, May 7, 2009

So as we get ready to commence our pre-draft coverage, one constant theme has been bugging me - the number of people that point out how many college players (74 this season) have declared for the draft.

True, there are only 60 picks in the NBA Draft. Simple math will tell you that even before you add foreigners and seniors to the mix, there are more early entrants to the draft than spots available.

So why does this make perfect sense?

Because of the "testing the waters" rule.

Yes, there are 74 underclassmen that have put their names into the mix. But of those 74, 48 are juniors. And of those 48 juniors, about two-thirds of them will be withdrawing their names from drat consideration before the June 15th deadline. And that doesn't even factor in guys like Martez Walker, a freshman from Riverside Community College, or Malcolm Thomas, a sophomore at San Diego City College, who may simply want to start earning money playing basketball (albeit more than likely not in the NBA).

I've said this before and I'll repeat it for you again: any junior that has any NBA aspirations whatsoever should declare for the draft. It should be the easiest decision of your college career.


Because you get to spend a month working out for NBA front office personnel. Even if you are not going to be drafted and you have every intention of returning to school, getting a chance to show off what you can do outside of the system you run in college is a good thing. It also gives the NBA guys a chance to critique your game, telling you things you can work on and improve to raise your draft stock for the following year.

Scottie Reynolds is going to end up being one of the best players in Villanova history when he is all said and done next season. But I can guarantee that his dream is not to go down as a great Big East player - he wants to make the NBA. Right now, he isn't an NBA player.

(photo credit: IBBW)

So how is it a bad thing that he lands a couple of workouts for some NBA GM's? He gets a chance to work out in front of them, and then will be told face-to-face by guys that evaluate talent for a living what exactly he needs to improve on if he wants to be drafted in 2010.


The "testing the waters" rule is useful for more than just the guys that are trying to determine whether or not they can get a guaranteed contract (Wayne Ellington and Ty Lawson, I'm looking at you on this one).

Which is why it is a joke that the NCAA is going to make the deadline to withdraw from the draft in early May.

Student-athletes. That's what these guys are supposed to be, right? Well, let me ask you this: what does late-April/early-May usually mean to a college student?


So not only have they eliminated the pre-draft camp, they are reducing the amount of time a player has to be evaluated and determine his true draft position by five weeks, and making that player travel all around the country while he should be prepping for final exams?

Am I the only one bothered by this? Does the NCAA (and the coaches, who brought about this change) understand that Ty Lawson and Wayne Ellington and Danny Green would have all been in the NBA this season had the deadline been moved up?

1 comment:

RTC said...

You're not the only one, Rob. It's totally retarded and the reason there's no outcry is b/c there's really nobody to step up for the student-athlete side of things.

The coaches are the ones who set the debate, and the media for the most part doesn't care as long as the coaches are happy and giving them quotes.

I've heard a little hint of a rumor that the NBA will move up its predraft stuff next season so that players will be able to attend prior to the deadline, but I'll believe when I see it. Good take, though.