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03-30-2010, 09:14 AM

Kansas’ Cole Aldrich leaving early for NBA

By DOUG TUCKER, AP Sports Writer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP)—Cole Aldrich, fighting back tears, said Monday he’ll skip his senior year at Kansas and head for the NBA.

The 6-11 center, who averaged almost a double-double for the Big 12 champions, is projected by most experts as a high first-round pick.

“The last three years have been pretty special,” he said.

Blessed with a wingspan greater than most men his height, Aldrich averaged 11.3 points and 9.8 rebounds for the Jayhawks, who were the overall No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament before they were upset by Northern Iowa. He also set a team record with 125 blocks.

The Jayhawks are still waiting for a decision by freshman swing man Xavier Henry, their second-leading scorer.

It would have been a surprise if Aldrich had elected to remain in school. His father, Walter Aldrich, is a construction worker who’s been put out of a job by the recession.

“We’ve known this was going to happen since last year,” said coach Bill Self. “To be real candid with everybody, and I think Cole would agree with this, I would strongly discourage him from coming back.

“I think he paid his dues here and I do think it is time for him to move forward into another chapter. He has made a lot of sacrifices—his family has— to come back in a time when he didn’t have to. We’re all very proud of him.”

Aldrich, a native of the Minneapolis area, said he planned to hire an agent soon.

“First of all, I want to thank everybody just for the opportunity I’ve had here,” said Aldrich. “It’s been a fun one.”

Aldrich referred to his paternal grandmother, who died during this past season after a long illness.

“I don’t want to get choked up or anything, but the last three years have been pretty special. It’s been a lot of highs, a few lows with my grandma…”

He paused and looked down.

“It’s been a special time for me and my family. I’ve talked with them extensively. We went through somewhat of the same process last year in figuring out what I wanted to do. I think my time has come in my life to change the chapter and go from one great chapter to hopefully start another great chapter in life.”

Aldrich and senior guard Sherron Collins, who are close friends, made a joint decision last spring to return this season and pursue an NCAA championship. But that was thwarted when Northern Iowa upset them in just the second round.

He was a reserve on the 2008 national championship team.

“We were all upset that it had to end so short,” he said. “Being a part of a team that went and played all six games and then playing three games last year, we had high goals. But those goals are going to be there again. And I hope the team next year is going to be there again. I’m really going to support those guys.”

Aldrich, an academic All-American, was named to The Associated Press third-team All-America squad on Monday.

“He’s represented himself and this school in a way that has been nothing but first class,” said Self. “He’s going to go ahead and finish up school and get his degree. He promised us that.”

Self said Aldrich’s projected draft position was “almost irrlevant right now with Cole.”

“I think we all know that he’s going to go pretty high,” Self said. “Whether he goes five or 14, I don’t really know. I think so much of it, and Cole will agree with this, will be dependent on what other bigs are in the draft and when certain teams draft in need of a big.”

03-30-2010, 09:17 AM
James Anderson of Oklahoma State is also leaving for the draft.

04-02-2010, 07:40 AM

Wake Forest's Aminu declares for NBA draft, will hire agent

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) -- Wake Forest forward Al-Farouq Aminu declared for the NBA draft on Thursday and announced he will hire an agent, ensuring his departure with two years of eligibility remaining.

The 6-foot-9 Aminu averaged 15.8 points this season and became the first Wake Forest player since Tim Duncan in 1997 to lead the Atlantic Coast Conference in rebounding at 10.7 per game.

"This was a difficult decision," Aminu said in a statement. "But after talking it over with my family and my coaches, I believe now is the right time for me to pursue my dream of playing in the NBA."

Coach Dino Gaudio said he did extensive research with NBA executives and believes Aminu is making the right choice. The Norcross, Ga., native is widely projected to be a first-round pick.

"I want to wish Al-Farouq all the best," Gaudio said. "I'm looking forward to following his progress in what will undoubtedly be a successful pro career."

Aminu is the fifth Wake Forest player to leave early for the NBA. Rodney Rogers left after his junior season in 1993, and Chris Paul left after his sophomore campaign in 2005. James Johnson and Jeff Teague both left after their sophomore seasons last year.

"I want to thank Wake Forest and the basketball program for all they have done for me the past two years," Aminu said. "I have had some great experiences and will miss the friends that I have made here. I'm excited to take the next step and begin my professional career."

04-03-2010, 08:59 AM

Georgia Tech’s Lawal to enter NBA draft

ATLANTA (AP)—Georgia Tech forward Gani Lawal says he is skipping his senior season to enter the NBA draft.

Lawal helped lead Georgia Tech to the second round of the NCAA tournament. He returned for his junior season after considering his NBA options last year.

Lawal says he is “ready to take the next step” in his career. The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 13.1 points and 8.5 rebounds this season. He was third in the Atlantic Coast Conference in rebounds.

Georgia Tech freshman Derrick Favors is a probable top-five pick but has not announced his plans for the NBA draft.

04-05-2010, 10:54 AM
Gordon Hayward, a lottery pick or a mid to late first-rounder?? Some scouts are comparing his game to Larry Bird.

04-08-2010, 07:09 AM
Cincinnati’s Stephenson to enter draft

CINCINNATI (AP)—Cincinnati freshman Lance Stephenson is entering the NBA draft.

The Big East’s rookie of the year announced on Wednesday that he’s going to hire an agent, forfeiting his remaining college eligibility. The 6-foot-5 guard from New York led the conference in scoring by a freshman with 12.3 points per game during a highly inconsistent season.

He finished strong, averaging 16.8 points and 8.3 rebounds over the final four games. As the season wound down, Stephenson said repeatedly that he planned to return for his sophomore season because he hadn’t met his own expectations.

He could have substantially increased his draft status by staying for at least one more year and improving his all-around game. Stephenson struggled with his outside shot much of the season.

Stephenson understands that he’s not going to be a top pick in the draft.

“I’ve heard from people that Lance needs to stay,” coach Mick Cronin said. “Lance understands he needs to develop as a player. He’s going to have a chance to do that as a professional. It’s a risk, but everything is a risk.”

Cronin flew to New York and met with Stephenson and his family to discuss the decision.

“They understand he could have played two more years and tried to be a top-five pick, but their family circumstances are what they are,” Cronin said. “He has a family that needs help.”

04-08-2010, 07:10 AM
Kansas freshman Henry going to NBA
By DOUG TUCKER, AP Sports Writer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP)—Wiping away tears, Kansas freshman Xavier Henry said Wednesday he’s headed for the NBA draft because his coaches have helped him get ready.

Averaging almost 14 points and five rebounds, the 6-foot-6 guard was the second-leading scorer for a team that won a sixth straight Big 12 championship and was ranked No. 1 most of the season, before getting upset in the second round of the NCAA tournament by Northern Iowa.

“I think coach prepared me as well as he can,” said Henry, flanked by his brother, C.J., and coach Bill Self. “He kept me confident throughout the whole season even when I went through slumps. He got my mindset ready to be able to play with anybody.”

Henry said he agonized over the decision even though it had been widely assumed that he would be Kansas’ first one-and-done player.

“People who really know me knew it would be a tough decision either way because they know I love people and once I start bonding with people that it’s real hard for me to let go,” he said.

“The people outside looking in, they probably had no idea what I was thinking.”

A smooth left-handed shooter who scored mostly from the outside, Henry was a starter from the opening day on a team that finished 32-3. He joins two other starters from the Big 12 champions who plan to enter the draft: senior guard Sherron Collins and junior center Cole Aldrich, who announced last week that he would skip his senior season.

Self termed it a “happy day” that his prize guard had an opportunity to build a good life for himself.

“I’m not going to lose sleep over losing these three guys,” he said. “I’m going to be happy for them.”

Henry’s father, mother and aunt were all scholarship basketball players at Kansas, a point Self stressed when he began recruiting the Oklahoma City native not long after he entered high school. The brothers first decided to play for John Calipari at Memphis and C.J. was already there last year when Calipari left for Kentucky.

A short time later, the brothers opted for Kansas.

C.J., who spent several years in the New York Yankees organization before giving up baseball, barely played this season. He sat next to his brother for the announcement but declined to talk about his future.

Xavier Henry teared up and dabbed at his eyes throughout the news conference.

“My teammates and coaches really helped me grow up this year,” he said. “They helped me grow up as a man. My family stuck by me the whole time. I’m thankful for that. I think I’m more prepared now than I would have been out of high school from a work ethic standpoint and just from a mindset standpoint. It’s a great thing to play here. It’s an unbelievable place to go to school and I wouldn’t take it back for anything.”

Even though he was one of the most highly sought players ever to sign with Kansas, Henry proved a good teammate who never tried to hog the ball or the spotlight.

Speculation varies as to how high he might go in the draft.

“I’ve heard everything from eighth to 28th,” he said. “But as long as I work hard, I’m going to get what I deserve. That’s what I believe.”

Self said he was not sorry to recruit a player that the coach had little chance of keeping more than one year.

“I think it’s definitely worth it to have a guy in your program for just one year if he’s a guy with the character of Xavier,” Self said.

“Regardless of what the perception was before he got to school here, we talked a lot and he was going to come to school here to be at Kansas and make the most of his college experience, and whenever the time was right, the time would be right. That was the understanding. This is not a sad day for us because we anticipated this could probably happen. We prepared for this.”

04-08-2010, 07:11 AM
Ohio State’s Turner giving up senior year for NBA
By RUSTY MILLER, AP Sports Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP)—After collecting almost every national player of the year honor, Ohio State’s Evan Turner is skipping his senior season to test himself in the NBA.

The 6-foot-7 point guard is expected to be a top-three pick in the June 24 draft. Yet he said his decision wasn’t an easy one.

“This is the toughest thing I had to do,” he said, his voice breaking. “But I was blessed with this decision and I have a great opportunity. I’m going to turn a leaf over and go on to the next stage of my life.”

The Chicago native averaged 20.4 points, 9.2 rebounds and 6 assists while shooting 52 percent from the field, 36.4 percent behind the arc and 76 percent at the line.

Turner was moved to point guard before the season, a decision by coach Thad Matta that raised some eyebrows because Turner had never played the position and had been prone to making mistakes with the ball.

But with Turner leading the way the Buckeyes went a surprising 29-8 (second-most wins in school history); won a share of the Big Ten title; took the conference tournament championship; and advanced to the NCAA tournament round of 16 before falling to Tennessee.

Even Matta said he knew it was time for Turner to make the leap to the next level.

“I told him up front, I’m OK if you go,” he said. “I said, ‘Coach Matta wants you back, but Thad Matta is OK if you go.’ (It’s) knowing what’s right for him.”

Turner said it wasn’t until late in the season that his mind wandered to his decision.

“February hit and I kind of started thinking a little bit about it,” he said. “I was in a win-win situation. I felt like if I would have come back we could have done big things, and also moving on and going to the NBA I could do good things. I had to look at what was going to make me happy.”

A first-team All-American, Turner had a huge year despite missing 4 1/2 weeks with broken bones in his back. He was injured while dunking during a game on Dec. 5, and had to go through extensive rehab before returning. The Buckeyes were just 3-3 without him.

He said the injury had little effect on his decision.

“You can’t really tell what’s going to go on with fate,” Turner said. “I tried to make the decision as a grown man looking toward the future.”

Turner has not hired an agent, but made it clear he is not waffling.

“I felt that whatever I did, I had to have two feet in,” he said. “I had to be committed. This is the decision I’m committed (to).”

Before the injury, he had triple-doubles in two of the Buckeyes’ first five games. Even in the second round of the NCAA tournament, he flirted with another triple-double with 24 points, nine rebounds and nine assists against Georgia Tech.

A near-unanimous pick for Big Ten player of the year after leading the league in scoring, rebounding and finishing second in assists, he guided Ohio State to wins in 16 of its final 18 games heading into the NCAA tournament.

The conference tournament provided his signature moment. He took an inbounds pass, dribbled to just past midcourt and hit a 37-foot 3-pointer at the buzzer to beat archrival Michigan 69-68 in the quarterfinals. Two days later, he had 31 points, 11 rebounds and six assists as the Buckeyes beat Minnesota to win the tournament.

The Associated Press Player of the Year this season said it wasn’t up to him how he would be remembered.

“The people who guard (you), they pretty much build your legacy,” he said. “You don’t build your own legacy. We’ll see in 10 or 15 years.”

Not even the top player on his high school team (Illinois’ Demetri McCamey was considered more of a blue-chipper), Turner set a record by being chosen Big Ten player of the week 10 times during his career, including an unprecedented seven times this season.

Turner foundered early in his college career, unsure of what his role was in Matta’s offense. But he sure came around.

Ohio State honors national players of the year by putting their numbers on a banner hanging from the ceiling of Value City Arena. Turner, the Naismith Award winner, will join such luminaries as Jerry Lucas, John Havlicek, Gary Bradds and Jim Jackson in that honor.

Because he declared for the NBA draft before an April 12 deadline, his departure will not lead to Ohio State receiving an Academic Progress Rate penalty. The basketball program was penalized after the late withdrawals of Greg Oden (2007) and Kosta Koufos (2008).

The third pick in June’s draft is guaranteed more than $7 million for the first two years of his contract, the second pick nearly $8 million and the top pick almost $9 million.

Ohio State has a strong recruiting class, led by the Naismith Award winner at the high school level, 6-9 Jared Sullinger of Columbus’ Northland High School.

“I had great times here, but I leave the program in great hands,” Turner said. “Obviously we have a lot of great players coming in and a lot of great players right now. We’re going to stay on top.”

04-08-2010, 07:43 AM

Wall among 5 Wildcats heading to NBA

By WILL GRAVES, AP Sports Writer

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP)—Freshman All-Americans John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins are among five Kentucky players who have declared for the NBA draft.

Junior forward Patrick Patterson, freshman guard Eric Bledsoe and freshman center Daniel Orton are also entering the draft.

Wall and Cousin are expected to be among the first few players selected.

The five player comprised the core of a team that went 35-3 this season and won the Southeastern Conference regular season and conference tournament titles before falling to West Virginia in the regional finals of the NCAA Tournament.

Coach John Calipari said he met with each player individually and encouraged them to gauge their draft prospects.

Players have until May 8 to change their minds.

04-09-2010, 07:56 AM

Texas guard Bradley to declare for NBA draft

AUSTIN, Texas (AP)—Texas freshman guard Avery Bradley will declare himself eligible for the NBA draft, but he doesn’t plan to hire an agent.

Bradley said Thursday that he’ll stay enrolled in class this semester and will schedule workouts around his schedule. By not signing with an agent, he could withdraw from the draft and return to the Longhorns next season without losing eligibility.

Bradley averaged 11.6 points last season for Texas, which reached No. 1 for the first time in school history before plummeting out of the polls.

04-09-2010, 07:57 AM

Oklahoma’s Warren opts to enter NBA draft

NORMAN, Okla. (AP)—Oklahoma guard Willie Warren said Thursday he plans to enter the NBA draft and give up his final two seasons of eligibility with the Sooners.

The formal announcement came in a news release from the university, after The Oklahoman and Tulsa World reported in Thursday’s editions that Warren had decided to turn pro. Warren said in the release that he has not signed with an agent but expects to do so soon.

“This was a stressful decision and one that I’ve been stuck in the middle on for a little while,” Warren said. “I didn’t like how things went this year with my injury and everything, but I also feel like I have the skills to take the next step. Some of the things I need to work on like being a better leader and being more vocal are things I can do at the next level.”

Warren said he’s spoken “extensively” about the decision with his mother and that he thinks it’s time to enter the NBA. He said Oklahoma coach Jeff Capel “is in my corner” and has promised to help Warren make the transition.

“I’m very happy for Willie and definitely think he’s ready for the next level,” Capel said in a statement. “I appreciate everything he’s done for our program and look forward to watching another Sooner in the NBA.”

Warren was projected by some as a first-round pick following his freshman season, when he was the Big 12’s freshman of the year. Warren opted to return to the Sooners, who were coming off an NCAA tournament regional final appearance keyed by national player of the year Blake Griffin, who was the No. 1 pick in last year’s NBA draft.

Oklahoma’s fortunes plummeted amid injuries, suspensions and team chemistry issues and the Sooners finished 13-18, their first losing season since 1980-81. They ended on a nine-game losing streak, the program’s longest skid since dropping a school-record 10 in a row in 1964.

Warren led the Sooners in scoring at 16.3 points per game and averaged 3.3 rebounds and 4.1 assists. He missed 10 games, including eight because of an ankle injury. He underwent season-ending arthroscopic surgery on the ankle March 3 and said his ankle is “doing great.”

“My freshman year I feel like I made some big contributions and I was somewhat satisfied,” Warren said. “I feel like I could have scored more, but I understood the makeup of our team and it was a great feeling to make it all the way to the Elite Eight. My sophomore year was up and down and tough on all of us. It was a roller coaster ride, especially for me with my ankle injury and being sick.

“But if I had to make my decision all over again, I would make the same one to attend OU. It was the best experience of my life and I want to thank all the Sooner fans who were behind me.”

Warren is the second Oklahoma player to announce he’s turning pro. Fellow guard Tommy Mason-Griffin announced his plans to do so last month.

Another guard, Ray Willis, has said he plans to transfer.

04-10-2010, 08:36 AM

Favors leaving Ga. Tech for the NBA

ATLANTA (AP)—To the surprise of no one, Derrick Favors is leaving Georgia Tech after only one season to enter the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-10 freshman forward is projected by most services as a top-five pick. Even when he signed with the Yellow Jackets, most fans and media figured he’d be one and done.

“I look forward to taking this next step in my basketball career,” Favors said in a statement released by the school. “The time is right, and this is the best decision for me and my family.”

Favors becomes the team’s second key player to leave school early, following junior forward Gani Lawal. The duo helped Georgia Tech reach the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game and second round of the NCAA tournament, and their early departures leave a big hole in the frontcourt for the 2010-11 season.

“I’ve enjoyed my time at Georgia Tech and feel my year here has helped my development as a player,” Favors said. “I’m glad we were able to get to the NCAA tournament and got a chance to play for the ACC championship.”

An Atlanta native, Favors was named ACC rookie of the year after ranking second on the team in scoring (12.4 points a game) and rebounds (8.4).

“He did a tremendous job for us this year and was a big part of our success,” coach Paul Hewitt said. “I’m confident he will be successful at the next level.”

04-11-2010, 09:45 AM
Patterson won’t rule out return to Kentucky
By JEFFREY McMURRAY, Associated Press Writer

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP)—Kentucky forward Patrick Patterson says he hasn’t necessarily closed the book on his college career, even though the school announced he was going pro.

“I’m half in and half out right now,” Patterson said in an interview with The Associated Press Saturday while he was watching horse races at Keeneland.

Patterson called the decision on whether to leave or stay for a senior season “a tie,” adding that he hasn’t signed the paperwork to enter the NBA draft so “technically I haven’t declared.”

He said he was weighing several things, including the talent level of next season’s Kentucky team and the possibility of an NBA lockout. Coach John Calipari has encouraged him to return to Kentucky, Patterson said, although he believes he is ready to play at the next level.

Last week, a news release from the university announced Patterson was one of five underclassmen to submit their names for the draft, along with freshman guards John Wall and Eric Bledsoe and freshman centers DeMarcus Cousins and Daniel Orton.

“I want to thank the fans who have supported me all three years,” Patterson said in the release. “I also want to thank the coaches for putting me in a position to showcase other parts of my game as well as my versatility. Lexington and UK will always be a special place to me.”

If Patterson were to change his mind, it would be the second time in two seasons. After last season under previous coach Billy Gillispie he announced he was entering the NBA draft, then withdrew his name in May. He hadn’t hired an agent, allowing him to return under NCAA rules.

Rules prohibit a player from submitting the paperwork to enter the draft and withdrawing a second time, so once he does that this time there is no turning back.

Patterson, who is on track to graduate in three years, went through senior day activities with the team in the season finale at Rupp Arena. He said doing that again had crossed his mind and acknowledged it would be strange.

“It would be kind of weird,” he said. “I don’t think anybody else has done that before. I’d probably be the first one.”

Patterson ranked second in the SEC and 12th nationally this season with a 57.5 percent field goal percentage. He has scored the 13th most points in Kentucky history.

He started at power forward for the Wildcats, who were a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament, losing to West Virginia in the regional finals.

04-13-2010, 08:01 AM
Tar Heels’ Davis declares for NBA draft

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP)—North Carolina forward Ed Davis is skipping his final two seasons of eligibility to enter the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-10 forward was the team’s second-leading scorer. He was also the Tar Heels’ top rebounder and shot blocker before missing the last 13 games with a broken left wrist sustained against Duke in February.

In a statement from the school, Davis said he is pursuing a “lifelong dream of playing in the NBA” and that he would continue to work toward his degree.

Davis averaged 13.4 points and 9.6 rebounds this year and was a key reserve as a freshman in North Carolina’s run to the 2009 national championship. He had 11 points and eight rebounds in 14 minutes against Michigan State in that title game.

04-13-2010, 08:02 AM
Mountaineers’ Ebanks declares for NBA draft

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP)—West Virginia forward Devin Ebanks is skipping his final two years of eligibility to enter the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-9 sophomore made the announcement Monday, after speaking to his mother and the Mountaineers’ coaching staff. West Virginia basketball spokesman Bryan Messerly said Ebanks has not hired an agent but plans to do so soon.

“We have decided that I should explore my options to pursue a dream that I have had since I was a little kid,” Ebanks said. “I want to thank West Virginia University, my coaches, my teammates and all the great fans.”

Ebanks was considered West Virginia’s top defender and averaged 12 points and a team-leading 8.1 rebounds last season. The Mountaineers finished 31-7, advancing to the Final Four before losing to eventual national champion Duke in Indianapolis.

“I certainly enjoyed coaching Devin for two years,” said West Virginia coach Bob Huggins. “He was extremely coachable and was a great teammate. We certainly wish him the best for a long and prosperous career.”

04-13-2010, 08:04 AM
Syracuse’s Wes Johnson to enter NBA draft
By JOHN KEKIS, AP Sports Writer

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP)—When Wes Johnson was asked what he thought Syracuse fans would remember most about him, he chose personal over performance.

“My smile,” Johnson said Monday, beaming as usual as he announced he was declaring for the NBA draft and hiring an agent.

Fans also will remember the blocks, dunks, 3-pointers, rebounds and steals— plus the unselfishness the Big East player of the year displayed every time he took the floor.

Johnson, one of only a handful of four-year transfers Jim Boeheim has accepted in his 34 years as head coach, averaged a team-leading 16.5 points and 8.5 rebounds while starting all 35 games in 2009-10. The 6-foot-7 small forward, who spent two years at Iowa State, is considered a potential lottery pick, maybe even a top 5 choice.

“I’m still speechless about it,” Johnson said.

In making the announcement that everyone expected and Syracuse fans dreaded, Johnson said it was a difficult decision because he enjoyed school and his teammates. He said he would continue taking classes and expects to graduate this summer.

“I think my mom, my family will be pleased by that,” he said.

Johnson said that before making the decision to skip his final year of eligibility, he talked at length with his family, Boeheim and assistant coach Rob Murphy, who recruited Johnson and has become close to the Orange star.

Boeheim declined to comment, preferring to let Johnson have the spotlight to himself. Johnson’s teammates were happy and saddened by the news.

“I’m happy for him. It’s the right decision for him, his family,” Orange guard Scoop Jardine said. “We had a great year with Wes. What more can we ask for?”

Johnson, who sat out last season because of NCAA rules, blossomed into one of the best players in the nation under Boeheim.

“He’s just a solid player, good night in and night out, and he’s quiet about it,” Boeheim said at midseason. “He’s the most unselfish player I’ve ever coached.”

Lightly recruited out of high school in Corsicana, Texas, Johnson almost became lost in the sometimes shady world of prep school basketball. After committing to play at Louisiana-Monroe in 2005, he changed his mind when the coach who recruited him left. Johnson briefly considered junior college in Texas before opting to go to prep school to improve his standardized test scores and maybe his college of choice.

Johnson made stops at the Patterson School in North Carolina, Eldon Academy in Michigan, and lived with his brother in Detroit before committing to Iowa State.

If not for Kevin Durant, Johnson likely would have been Big 12 freshman of the year in 2006-07, when he started 30 games for the Cyclones and averaged more than 12 points and nearly eight rebounds. But after an injury-plagued sophomore season Johnson had a falling-out with the coaching staff and transferred.

After sitting the requisite year but making an impact in Syracuse practices, Johnson burst on the national scene again in November, earning most outstanding player honors at the 2K Sports Classic tournament. He scored 42 points and grabbed 19 rebounds in lopsided victories over California and defending national champion North Carolina at Madison Square Garden.

Despite a hard fall in a game against Providence in early February that limited his mobility, then an injury to his right (shooting) hand a week later against Connecticut, Johnson did not miss a game and helped lead Syracuse to a No. 1 ranking in the AP poll the first week in March. Syracuse was just the sixth team to go from unranked in the opening poll to No. 1.

Fully healed by the time postseason play began, Johnson led the Orange to easy victories over Vermont and Gonzaga in the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament, scoring a career-high 31 points and snaring 14 rebounds against the Zags. Syracuse finished 30-5 after losing to Butler in the round of 16.

Johnson was a finalist for the Naismith Trophy, presented each year by the Atlanta Tipoff Club to the top college basketball player in the nation. He was also a contender for the Wooden Award and the Oscar Robertson Trophy, presented to the nation’s top player by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association.

“He’s a player that can do it all,” Jardine said. “He didn’t get a lot of credit for how good he is on the defensive end. He’s going to be an exciting player next year to watch.”

04-13-2010, 08:28 AM
Sources: Hobson enters NBA draft
By Diamond Leung, ESPN.com

New Mexico junior forward Darington Hobson will declare for the NBA draft but will not hire an agent, two sources close to the situation told ESPN.com on Monday.

A formal announcement of Hobson's decision is expected to come at a news conference Tuesday.

By not hiring an agent, the versatile 6-foot-7-inch All-American leaves open the possibility he will return to the Lobos for one more season.

The junior college transfer was named the Mountain West Conference's player of the year and led the team with 15.9 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game in his only year at New Mexico.

The Lobos won 30 games along with the conference championship and advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament, in which Hobson played with a sore wrist.

Hobson has until May 8 to withdraw from the draft.

04-14-2010, 07:55 AM
Baylor’s Udoh entering NBA draft early

WACO, Texas (AP)—Ekpe Udoh plans to bypass his senior season at Baylor and enter the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-10 power forward said he hasn’t decided on an agent, but does plan to hire one and be available in the June draft. Early projections have Udoh being a possible a lottery pick.

After the Bears’ season ended with a loss to eventual national champion Duke in the NCAA South Regional final, Udoh sat down with coach Scott Drew to discuss the future.

“We came to the conclusion that I put myself in the best position possible to reach my dreams,” Udoh said Tuesday. “My time here was great. It was the best time of my life.”

“When you have a relationship with your head coach that’s as strong as coach Drew and I, he was all in. When he was all in, I was ready to go,” Udoh said. “I’m all in. I’m going to the NBA.”

Udoh averaged 13.9 points and 9.8 rebounds a game this season, his first at Baylor. Udoh, whose self-proclaimed nickname is “Nightmare,” set a Big 12 record with 133 blocked shots while helping the Bears reach an NCAA regional final.

The season ended for Baylor (28-8) with a 78-71 loss to Duke. Udoh had 18 points, 10 rebounds, six assists and five blocks in that game.

With Udoh’s departure, the Bears have three starters gone from the team that got within one victory of the Final Four. Point guard Tweety Carter and 7-foot center Josh Lomers were both seniors.

LaceDarius Dunn, who was Baylor’s leading scorer as a junior this season, hasn’t yet announced whether he will return for his senior season or go pro.

Udoh, who turns 23 next month, played two seasons at Michigan before transferring to Baylor.

In 67 games at Michigan, Udoh averaged 5.5 points and 3.4 rebounds while scoring at least 10 points only nine times. He left a year after coach Tommy Amaker departed and then had to sit out the 2008-09 season, when the Wolverines made it to the NCAA tournament and Baylor advanced to the NIT final at Madison Square Garden.

Udoh, whose name is pronounced EHP’-ay YOO’-doh, had 16 double-doubles for Baylor. He scored in double figures 26 games.

His nickname came from a practice at Baylor while he was redshirting, when one of his teammates said something about his dominating presence and Udoh responded “I’m a nightmare.” The nickname stuck.

Udoh, the son of Nigerian immigrants who grew up in Edmond, Okla., wore No. 13 for the Bears—his middle name is Friday.

He quickly became a fan favorite at Baylor, where students started wearing horror film-inspired hockey masks during home games.

04-15-2010, 08:42 AM
Purdue’s Johnson, Moore enter NBA draft process
By CLIFF BRUNT, AP Sports Writer

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP)—Purdue fans with big dreams for next season might need to hold their collective breath for a few weeks.

The school announced Wednesday that center JaJuan Johnson and guard E’Twaun Moore will enter the NBA draft. They aren’t hiring agents, though, so they have until May 8 to withdraw their names from consideration and return for their senior seasons.

Purdue coach Matt Painter said in a statement that both players had his support in considering their options.

“There are a lot of positives that can come out of the information gathering that takes place this time of year,” he said.

Moore, a 6-foot-4 guard, led the team with 16.4 points per game as the Boilermakers went 29-6 and shared the Big Ten regular-season title. Johnson, a 6-10 center, averaged 15.5 points and a team-high 7.1 rebounds this past season.

If drafted, Johnson or Moore would become the first Purdue player since Glenn Robinson went No. 1 overall in 1994 to be selected after declaring early. Willie Deane declared early in 2002, but returned for his senior year.

Moore and Johnson were showcased after Robbie Hummel, the team’s most versatile player, tore the ACL in his right knee late in the regular season. They led the Boilermakers to the round of 16 in the NCAA tournament after many expected them to lose to Siena in the first round.

Johnson, Purdue’s career leader in blocked shots, was a first-team All-Big Ten selection and has been named to the Big Ten All-Defensive Team the past two seasons.

“This has been a dream of mine for a long time, and this is the first step toward making it come true,” Johnson said in the release. “Putting my name into the draft as a junior allows me the great options of either returning to Purdue or pursuing my professional dreams.”

Moore was a first-team All-Big Ten pick this season after becoming the third player since 1971 to lead Purdue in both scoring and assists. He was the first player since Troy Lewis in the late 1980s to lead the Boilermakers in scoring three consecutive seasons.

“I’m confident that this process will make me stronger as a person and a player,” Moore said. “It’s important to me to leave open the option of returning to Purdue, but I also want to take the first step toward getting my game ready for the next level.”

04-15-2010, 08:43 AM
Butler’s Hayward to test NBA waters
By MICHAEL MAROT, AP Sports Writer

INDIANAPOLIS (AP)—Gordon Hayward couldn’t quite say no to the NBA’s money.

He still hasn’t said goodbye to his Butler teammates, either.

The 6-foot-9 sophomore spent Wednesday afternoon telling Bulldogs players and coaches that he would enter the NBA draft while retaining his option of returning to the school he nearly led to a national championship.

Hayward has until May 8 to withdraw his name from the draft. He is projected to go in the top 15 picks and would become the first Butler player selected in the first round.

“I have decided to declare for this June’s NBA draft,” Hayward said in a statement released by the school. “At the present time, I have not signed with an agent. I’m looking forward to further exploring my options in the NBA, while finishing this semester strongly in the classroom.”

Hayward was seen smiling inside the basketball office Wednesday afternoon as he chatted with two of his teammates—outgoing seniors Avery Jukes and Willie Veasley—before the decision was announced. Jukes and Veasley were scheduled to play briefly with the Washington Generals in a Wednesday night game at Conseco Fieldhouse against the Harlem Globetrotters.

Both said they supported Hayward’s decision and don’t believe he will be back with the Bulldogs next season.

“He still has some time, but I think he’s got a pretty good shot of going pretty high,” Veasley said. “This is probably one of the toughest decisions he’s ever had to make because we did so well and we always talked about that bond that we had together. But I’m sure he’s excited to make it onto this stage.”

Money may not have been the only factor, either.

If Hayward returned to college, he’d be looking at either coming out next season with the possibility of an NBA lockout or playing all four college seasons in a draft that tends to reward potential over experience.

A native of Brownsburg, Ind., located on the west side of Indianapolis, Hayward led the Bulldogs with 15.5 points per game and into the school’s first national championship game. He was voted Horizon League player of the year and Most Outstanding Player of the West Regional, and along the way his draft stock soared.

Hayward is considered a small forward with point-guard skills, a combination that made him a matchup problem for most college teams. At Butler, Hayward handled the ball, shot 3-pointers and became even more adept at driving past bigger defenders.

And that might not be the best part of his game.

“My first reaction was that he’ll be a good pro because I think he held a lot back in college,” Jukes said. “I think he was not as aggressive as he could have been, and if they can bring that out of him, they’re going to have a great pro player.”

Still, Hayward’s versatility was one of the primary reasons Butler reached its first Final Four. Hayward also had two chances to give the Bulldogs a national title, but he missed a baseline jumper with about 5 seconds to go, and his buzzer-beating half-court heave bounced off the rim, giving Duke a 61-59 victory.

Butler coach Brad Stevens sounded as collected about the decision as he had throughout the Bulldogs’ improbable tourney run.

“We’ll support him as we gather additional information,” Stevens said, one week after signing a 12-year deal to stay at Butler.

Stevens’ decision left only one lingering question for the Bulldogs: Would Hayward return?

He still could, and if Hayward pulls out of the draft, Butler will have four of its five starters back. That could put the Bulldogs among the top five in the preseason poll.

Without him, Butler will still have 2008 Horizon League player of the year Matt Howard and both guards, Ronald Nored and Shelvin Mack, back in the lineup. Nored was chosen the league’s co-defensive player of the year this season.

“I’m not going to lie, it will hurt them because he’s one of our best players,” Jukes said. “But we played without Matt before, we played without Shelvin before, we played without Ronald before, I don’t know if we’ve played without Gordon before but we’ve proven that we can pick it up. There’s always a chance he could come back, too. You just never know.”

04-18-2010, 08:01 AM
Georgetown’s Greg Monroe declares for NBA draft

WASHINGTON (AP)—Georgetown center Greg Monroe is heading to the NBA, planning to hire an agent and skip his last two seasons of college eligibility.

“It was mentally what I wanted to do,” Monroe said in a statement released by the school Saturday. “I feel like I’m ready to make this step after working with our coaches for two years.”

The 6-foot-11 Monroe was a third-team AP All-American as a sophomore after averaging 16.1 points, 9.6 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.5 blocks this season.

He was the Big East Conference rookie of the year in 2008-09 after averaging 12.7 points and 6.5 rebounds as a freshman.

“Greg and I, along with his family, have examined the situation, and he has made an educated decision,” Hoyas coach John Thompson III said. “We have watched him grow as a player and as a young man while here at Georgetown. We support him and I look forward to watching and cheering him on for many years to come.”

Monroe also was picked as the Pete Newell Big Man of the Year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches this season, when Georgetown went 23-11 and reached the Big East tournament final but was upset by Ohio in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

During his two seasons with the Hoyas, Monroe averaged 14.5 points and 8.2 rebounds.

04-18-2010, 08:03 AM
This draft is becoming deep for teams who are looking for guys who play the PF/ C spots- Favors, Cousins, Monroe, Patterson, Aldrich, Whiteside, and Ed Davis could all be drafted in the lottery or middle 1st round.

04-18-2010, 09:03 AM
^^^ Add Epke Udoh & Larry Sanders

04-21-2010, 08:56 AM
BYU guard Fredette declares for NBA draft

PROVO, Utah (AP)—BYU guard Jimmer Fredette is entering his name in the 2010 NBA draft but will keep his college eligibility by not hiring an agent.

The junior announced Monday that he’s entering the draft so he can explore opportunities in the NBA.

Players who have not signed with an agent can return to college by withdrawing from the draft by May 8.

In the meantime, Fredette can attend pre-draft scouting camps and work out with NBA teams.

An All-American, Fredette led BYU to a record 30 wins in the 2009-10 season and a first-round win in the NCAA tournament, which was the team’s first since 1993.

04-21-2010, 08:57 AM
Nevada sophomore Babbitt leaving for NBA draft

RENO, Nev. (AP)—Nevada sophomore Luke Babbitt says he has hired an agent and is forgoing his final two years of eligibility to enter the 2010 NBA draft.

The 6-foot-9, 225-pound forward who was named an honorable mention All-American this year by The Associated Press says in a statement released by the university Tuesday that he wants to pursue his lifelong dream of playing pro basketball.

Babbitt says it was a difficult decision. The Western Athletic Conference’s player of the year ranked ninth in the nation in scoring this past season, averaging 21.9 points per game.

04-21-2010, 08:58 AM
Louisville’s Samardo Samuels enters NBA Draft

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP)—Louisville center Samardo Samuels has declared for the NBA Draft but will not hire an agent, leaving open the possibility of returning for his junior season.

Cardinals coach Rick Pitino said Samuels and his family approached Pitino about testing the NBA draft and that he supports Samuels “100 percent.”

The 6-foot-9, 265-pound sophomore has until May 8 to withdraw from draft consideration. He averaged 15.3 points and 7.0 rebounds last season for the Cardinals.

Pitino said he will orchestrate Samuels’ meetings with NBA teams.

04-24-2010, 08:42 AM
Seminoles’ 7-1 Solomon Alabi entering NBA draft

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP)—Florida State’s 7-1 center, Solomon Alabi, is entering the NBA draft.

Alabi, 22, averaged 9.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and a school-record 2.1 blocked shots in 77 games for the Seminoles. He was a third-team All Atlantic Coast Conference pick this past season when he helped Florida State to the NCAA tournament for the second straight year. He was twice chosen to the ACC’s all defensive team.

Coach Leonard Hamilton says Alabi will finish his academic work this semester and is on track to receive a degree in international relations next year.

A pair of 7-0 juniors, Jonathan Kreft and Xavier Gibson, will be candidates vying for Alabi’s starting center position next season.

04-26-2010, 08:03 AM
Kentucky’s Patterson heading to the NBA
By WILL GRAVES, AP Sports Writer

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP)—Patrick Patterson believes his three years at Kentucky have prepared him for life in the NBA.

Both on and off the floor.

Patterson evolved from a somewhat raw 6-foot-9 talent who never ventured too far from the basket into a polished forward who could knock down a 3-pointer and lock down decidedly quicker players on defense.

But it’s what he endured away from the court that may have him even better equipped for the chaotic life of a professional.

“I definitely feel like a veteran, feel like it’s been five years at Kentucky,” Patterson said Friday after announcing he was going to enter the NBA Draft and skip his senior season with the Wildcats.

Maybe that’s because Patterson’s involvement with Kentucky spanned parts of three distinct eras in the program’s history.

He was recruited by Tubby Smith, who then bolted the Bluegrass for Minnesota before getting Patterson to commit. New coach Billy Gillispie eventually persuaded Patterson to help restore the program to it’s former glory. Which Patterson did, but under John Calipari, who replaced Gillispie following two turbulent seasons on the job.

Eventually, however, Patterson did what he promised he would do when he arrived: put Kentucky back on the map. He averaged 14.3 points and 7.4 rebounds last season as the Wildcats went 35-3 and tore through the Southeastern Conference on their way to both the regular season and conference tournament titles.

“The first two years here at the University of Kentucky were not the true Kentucky years,” Patterson said. “To be part of a team that got us back, I definitely think that I was part of the history and progression of getting Kentucky back to where it needs to be and it should be.”

Patterson will join freshmen John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Bledsoe and Daniel Orton in the NBA Draft. Though the university announced two weeks ago Patterson was leaving, he wavered, telling The Associated Press on April 10 that he was “50-50” about coming back.

Part of the wavering came from the pain of coming up just short of reaching the Final Four. The Wildcats were upset by West Virginia in the regional finals of the NCAA tournament, a particularly bitter pill to swallow for Patterson, a West Virginia native.

“It’s definitely still eating at me,” he said. “It’s extremely tough to leave the way we did. We definitely weren’t satisfied with being in the Elite Eight.”

Calipari encouraged Patterson to return for another season, though with his degree in hand—he’s on track to graduate in two weeks—the prospect of becoming a first-round selection is simply too good to pass up.

He hasn’t hired an agent yet but said he expects to be taken sometime in the middle of the first round. That’s about where he was slotted to go last spring when he put his name in for the draft only to reconsider after talking to Calipari.

He considers himself a better all-around player now thanks in part to playing in Calipari’s dribble drive offense. He developed a jump shot—he made a respectable 35 percent of his 3-pointers—and proved capable playing defense on the perimeter.

Though his scoring and rebounding averages this year were both career lows, he seamlessly fit in with a revamped roster that propelled Kentucky back to national prominence.

He doesn’t expect the Wildcats to go anywhere. He’s taken notice of the high profile recruits flocking to Kentucky—the Wildcats signed point guard Brandon Knight last week and have verbal commitments from two of the top players in the Class of 2011—and has little doubt the program is back to stay.

“I consider it like he’s passing the baton,” said Tywanna Patterson, his mother. “Like everybody that is leaving is basically passing the baton to someone else. Therefore, we’re back on top, we’ll always be great at Kentucky. So he’s not leaving it in disarray.”

05-19-2010, 08:49 AM

Wizards win NBA lottery, Nets third

Posted: Tuesday May 18, 2010 8:27PM ; Updated: Tuesday May 18, 2010 8:44PM

SECAUCUS, N.J. (AP) -- With a lucky charm from the franchise's best era, the Washington Wizards won the NBA's draft lottery Tuesday night.

Washington moved up from the No. 5 spot to earn the top pick in next month's draft, when it will likely choose between Kentucky freshman John Wall and national player of the year Evan Turner of Ohio State.

The Wizards were represented by Irene Pollin, who wore the 1978 Bullets championship ring of her late husband, longtime owner Abe Pollin. When the Wizards pulled off the surprising win, Irene Pollin's jaw dropped and appeared to mouth 'Oh my God!!' with wide eyes.

The lottery victory is one of the rare things that has gone right in a disastrous year for the Wizards, marred by the suspension of Gilbert Arenas for bringing guns into the Verizon Center locker room. They finished 26-56 after being widely forecast to finish in the middle of the Eastern Conference.

Now they hope the No. 1 pick can help spark a quick turnaround under Ted Leonsis, who is close to completing a deal to buy the franchise from the Pollin family.


Here is the official draft order:

1. Washington Wizards
2. Philadelphia 76ers
3. New Jersey Nets
4. Minnesota Timberwolves
5. Sacramento Kings
6. Golden State Warriors
7. Detroit Pistons
8. Los Angeles Clippers
9. Utah Jazz
10. Indiana Pacers
11. New Orleans Hornets
12. Memphis Grizzlies
13. Toronto Raptors
14. Houston Rockets

05-25-2010, 12:21 AM
The top 2 players in this draft, Wall and Turner, are most likely being picked #1 and #2 next month to Washington and Philly.

The intrigue will start with #3, as New Jersey has to decide- Favours or Cousins? Who will be the best complement to Brook Lopez? That's gonna be a tough choice to make for them.

I'm interested to see where the quick guards who can dunk e.g. Avery Bradley of Texas, and Eric Bledsoe of Kentucky will end up in the draft. They only played 1 year of college ball, so teams have to be patient with these young guys and their development.

I've watched the NBA draft on cable TV here since 2003 (LeBron, Wade draft), so BTV will surely show the draft next month live as well.

05-25-2010, 09:19 AM
Favors has the ideal body of a power forward but his skillset is no power forward. The guy has no reliable jumper outside 6 feet either. Even if you let Favours as play as a center I dont think he is skilled enough at this point to play at least 20 minutes in the NBA.

If I am new jersey nets take the best available player and go draft Cousins. Brook has played power forward in college with his twin, Robin, manning the center spot. Worry about the fit later.

If I am to run a draft based on potential

1. Wall - Freak of nature and someone you can never go wrong. Franchise point guard
2. Cousins - He will become the most dominant bigman of this draft and should have no difficulty becoming a 20-10 big in 2 years time. Standing 6'11, 300 lbs, 7'6 wingspan and 7'5 standing reach. I see Cousins having a better career than Brook Lopez as long as Cousins figure out how not to get fouled to often.
3. Turner - Brandoy Roy clone and late bloomer. Brandon Roy's success is predicated to deadly mid-range pull up jumper and crafty penetration skills. Turner has the later but the former will be the true test if he is indeed Roy v2.0
4. Johnson - He will contribute as soon as his first NBA game. Runs the floor and dunks like a PHX version of Shawn Marion. Ballhandling is below average which makes him almost comparable to Marion. What make him nice is his silky smooth 3pt shooting and mid-range shooting
5. Farvors - Totally a project. I watched some of his videos in youtube and I dont see that "explosiveness" factor. Reminds me of Emeka Okafor more than anyone.

Mateen Cleaves
06-01-2010, 07:41 PM
Interesting numbers from the NBA Draft Combine. They're probably not going to affect the top of the draft. But it's fun to look at the stats and guess who's moving up, who might be able to sneak into the lottery, and who's on the bubble for the first round (guaranteed money). For example, the numbers for Nevada's Luke Babbitt partly explain why he's now generating a little of pre-draft buzz (Larry Bird might have to flip a coin in choosing between Babbitt and Gordon Hayward).

Official Measurements (http://www.nbadraft.net/2010-nba-draft-combine-official-measurements)

Results of Athleticism Tests (http://www.nbadraft.net/nba-draft-combine-athleticism-test-results)

Results of Shooting Drills (http://www.nbadraft.net/nba-draft-combine-shooting-drill-results)

06-05-2010, 09:05 AM

Lithuanian big man likely to pull out of Draft

By David Aldridge, TNT analyst
Posted Jun 3 2010 5:51PM

The chances of an international player cracking the top half of the first round of the June 24 Draft is decreasing rapidly, with 19-year-old forward Donatas Motiejunas of Lithuania likely to pull his name from consideraton before the June 15 deadline for international players under 22 to withdraw from the Draft. The 7-footer, who is playing for Benetton Treviso this season, was looking to get a guarantee from a top-12 team in the Draft before coming to play in the NBA next season, but none was forthcoming.

In a sign that Motiejunas is likely to stay in Europe, he had his tonsils removed on Monday after dealing with throat infections for the better part of a year. The time he'll spend recuperating instead of practicing and working out for potential NBA employers would indicate that he's made his decision.

A source close to Motiejunas put the chances of his withdrawal from the Draft at "90-10."

Through the first part of this year, many mock drafts had Motiejunas as a potential top-10 pick, with his ability to shoot and score at his size a potential boon for NBA teams. But growing concerns about his weight and his defense made many NBA personnel people in the top half of the Draft leery. If Motiejunas stays with Benetton another year and works on his game he probably will be one of the top prospects in the 2011 Draft, which isn't viewed as having as many big men prospects.

The Draft status of another 2010 prospect with first-round potential, French forward Kevin Seraphin, is also up in the air. Seraphin injured his knee this week and is expected to miss a couple of weeks at minimum, and won't be able to work out for NBA teams that have gone to Europe this week to see him in action with his French League team, Cholet, which is in the French League semifinals, or in next week's Adidas Eurocamp in Treviso.

Seraphin, whose agent, Bouna Ndiaye, is credited with helping developing talents like Portland's Nicolas Batum and Dallas rookie guard Rod Boubois while they were emerging talents in Europe, is currently thought to be a late first-round pick by NBA personnel sources.

06-11-2010, 01:04 PM
My 1st Round Mock Draft - 6/11/10

1. Washington - 6'4 PG John Wall. No brainer pick.
2. Philadelphia - 6'7 G/F Evan Turner. Sixers take best player available (BPA).
3. New Jersey - 6'10 C/F Derric Favors. Cousins is better but Nets pick Favors as they already have a center in Brook Lopez.
4. Minnesotta - 6'11 C Demarcus Cousins. BPA. If Cousins has no weight and attitude concerns I will pick him ahead of John Wall.
5. Sacramento - 6'10 C/F Greg Monroe. They need an upgrade for Hawes.
6. Golden State - 6'7 G/F Wes Johnson. Don Nelson will wet his pants knowing a perimeter player who runs the floor like a kangaroo, moves well without the ball and can shoot from almost everywhere is available for this pick.
7. Detroit - 6'10 C/F Ekpe Udoh. Frustrated that Monroe is no longer available, Dumars pick his second guy of choice.
8. LA Clippers - 6'9 SF Paul George. First shocker of the draft.
9. Utah Jazz - 6'9 PF Patrick Patterson. Utah drafts a potential replacement for Boozer.
10. Indiana - 6'8 F Gordon Hayward. Larry Bird drafts Indiana native. Second shocker of the draft.
11. New Orleans - 6'7 G/F Xavier Henry. Shooter.
12. Memphis - 6'1 PG Eric Bledsoe. Memphis is reportedly set on Bledsoe after working him out.
13. Toronto - 6'8 F Al Farouq Aminu. Colangelo has this pedigree for risks in drafting projects (see Bargnani and Derozan)
14. Houston - 6'10 C Cole Aldrich. Someone who will shoulder the load once Yao breakdown to injury (again).
15. Milwaukee - 6'10 F/C Ed Davis. Perfect fit for Milwaukee.
16. Minnesotta - 6'9 F Luke Babbit. Someone who can shoot.
17. Chicago - 6'4 Dominique Jones. Chicago fans screams "wtf! he cant shoot". Chicago is said to be set in picking Jones.
18. Miami - 6'3 Avery Bradley. Said to be the best defender among guard prospects but more of a shooter than someone who you would want to run the point. Perfect complement for ball dominant SG like Wade (assuming Wade is still wearing Heat jersey by October).
19. Celtics - 7'0 C/F Hassan Whiteside. Celtics is more than happy taking a project player whose length and shooting resembles that of KG. But as mentioned, Whiteside is a project.
20. San Antonio - 6'4 Elliot Williams. A shooter they badly need. Williams worked out with the Spurs and cancelled all other workouts. Rumor is Spurs gave him a promise with their 20th pick. San Antonio round out the offseason with Williams and Splitter.
21. Oklahoma - 6'10 C Daniel Orton. Oklahoma take home a local guy.
22. Portland - 6'9 C Kevin Seraphin. Portland takes another euro guy and let him play in the Euroleague for a while.
23. Minnesotta - 6'6 G James Anderson. Minnesotta is shocked Anderson is still available. Minnesotta take home a scorer who can shoot.
24. Atlanta - 6'11 C Larry Sanders. Atlanta gets a center with wingspan and standing reach that matches that of Cousins.
25. Memphis - 6'4 G Willie Warren. Memphis draft another shooter.
26. Oklahoma - 6'6 F Damion James. Oklahoma round out with a hardworking player.
27. New Jersey - 6'8 F Stanley Robinson. Filler for SF spot.
28. Memphis - 7'1 Solomon Alabi. They like drafting centers standing more than 7'0. They now have Gasol, Thabeet, Haddadi and Alabi. It ryhmes well to.
29. Orlando - 6'7 F Quincy Pondexter. Orlando takes a scorer from the draft
30. Washington - 6'7 F Gani Lawal. Washington takes a next best available power forward.

06-15-2010, 11:06 AM
Updated 1st Round Mock Draft - 6/15/10

1. Washington - John Wall
2. Philadelphia - Evan Turner
3. New Jersey - Derric Favors
4. Minnesotta - Wes Johnson
5. Sacramento - Demarcus Cousins
6. Golden State - Greg Monroe
7. Detroit - Ekpe Udoh
8. LA Clippers - Paul George
9. Utah Jazz - Patrick Patterson
10. Indiana - Gordon Hayward
11. New Orleans - Xavier Henry
12. Memphis - Eric Bledsoe
13. Toronto - Al Farouq Aminu
14. Houston - Cole Aldrich
15. Milwaukee - Ed Davis
16. Minnesotta - Luke Babbit
17. Chicago - Dominique Jones
18. Miami - Avery Bradley
19. Celtics - Daniel Orton
20. San Antonio - Elliot Williams
21. Oklahoma - Hassan Whiteside
22. Portland - Kevin Seraphin
23. Minnesotta - James Anderson
24. Atlanta - Larry Sanders
25. Memphis - Willie Warren
26. Oklahoma - Damion James
27. New Jersey - Stanley Robinson
28. Memphis - Solomon Alabi
29. Orlando - Darrington Jobson
30. Washington - Quincy Pondexter

06-16-2010, 08:50 AM

48 Early Entrants Withdraw From Draft

The NBA announced on Tuesday that 48 players who had declared as early entry candidates for the 2010 NBA Draft have withdrawn.

There are 50 collegiate and five international prospects that remain early entry candidates.

Here is the list of players from U.S. colleges and institutions who have withdrawn their names from consideration for the 2010 NBA Draft:

Lavoy Allen, Temple
Kevin Anderson, Richmond
Talor Battle, Penn State
Keith Benson, Oakland
Anatoly Bose, Nicholls State
Dee Bost, Mississippi State
Carlon Brown, Utah
Mike Davis, Illinois
Paul Davis, Winston-Salem State
Malcolm Delaney, Virginia Tech
Kenneth Faried, Morehead State
Jimmer Fredette, BYU
Anthony Gurley, Massachusetts
Jeremy Hazell, Seton Hall
Adnan Hodzic, Lipscomb
JaJuan Johnson, Purdue
Ravern Johnson, Mississippi State
Cameron Jones, Northern Arizona
Kenny Lawson, Creighton
Demetri McCamey, Illinois
E’Twaun Moore, Purdue
Arnett Moultrie, UTEP
Rico Pickett, Manhattan
Eniel Polynice, Mississippi
Herb Pope, Seton Hall
Jeff Robinson, Seton Hall
Tracy Smith, North Carolina State
Alex Tyus, Florida
Quinton Watkins, San Diego State
Chris Wright, Dayton

Here is the list of international players who have withdrawn their names from consideration for the 2010 NBA Draft:

Pablo Aguilar, Granada (Spain)
Andrew Albicy, Paris-Levallois (France)
Robin Benzing, Ratiopharm Ulm (Germany)
Stefan Bircevic, Metalac (Serbia)
Bojan Bogdanovic, Cibona (Croatia)
Sarra Camara, Le Havre (France)
Antoine Diot, Le Mans (France)
Bangaly Fofana, Asvel (France)
Miralem Halilovic, Sloboda Dita (Bosnia)
Edwin Jackson, Rouen (France)
Mindaugas Kuzminskas, Siauliai (Lithuania)
Luc Louves, Maurienne (France)
Uros Lukovic, Radnicki Basket (Serbia)
Donatas Motiejunas, Benetton Treviso (Italy)
Tomasz Nowakowski, Luka Koper (Slovenia)
Xavier Rabaseda, FC Barcelona (Spain)
Fernando Raposo, Pau Orthez (France)
Semen Shashkov, Ural Ekaterinburg (Russia)

Via RealGM Staff Report

06-23-2010, 08:22 AM
The NBA has announced its Green Room players for the 2010 NBA Draft.

Cole Aldrich (Kansas)
Al-Farouq Aminu (Wake Forest)
Luke Babbitt (Nevada)
DeMarcus Cousins (Kentucky)
Ed Davis (North Carolina)
Derrick Favors (Georgia Tech)
Paul George (Fresno State)
Gordon Hayward (Butler)
Xavier Henry (Kansas)
Wesley Johnson (Syracuse)
Greg Monroe (Georgetown)
Patrick Patterson (Kentucky)
Evan Turner (Ohio State)
Ekpe Udoh (Baylor)
John Wall (Kentucky)

Via RealGM Staff Report

Read more: http://realgm.com/src_wiretap/2/#ixzz0rdBkCQrN

06-25-2010, 08:24 AM
John Wall is the 1st Pick Over-all. Drafted by the Wiz.

What happens to Gilbert now?

06-25-2010, 09:07 AM
^He has to play alongside Wall. Plus throw in Kirk Hinrich in the mix.....

06-25-2010, 09:46 AM
I love Cousins falling to Sacramento's lap. Tyreke Evans and Demarcus Cousins is like Sacramento's version of Kobe/Shaq. Not as talented as the latter but I can draw several parallel comparison.

06-25-2010, 09:50 AM
More like C-Webb and J-Dub to me.

06-25-2010, 12:34 PM
Every year, 1 or 2 unexpected players are taken early in the lottery, and so someone widely believed to be taken in the top 10 falls to the middle of the 1st round. This year, Ekpe Udoh was drafted by Golden State at the #6 spot over other forwards like Monroe and Aminu, and Ed Davis falls out of the top 10 to #13 and gets picked up by Toronto, as they get a possible PF replacement for Chris Bosh.