Strong Big Man Crop Could Headline 2015 NBA Draft

BigsBy JOSH NEWMAN and ADAM ZAGORIA

NEW YORK – When NBA Commissioner Adam Silver steps to the podium to open the 2015 NBA Draft, there is at least a fair chance he will read off the name of a big man.

After that, there could be another, and another, and yes, another. By the time the first round ends, Silver may have spent a good portion of his evening reading names of kids who will spend their NBA careers in the post.

The 2015 NBA Draft is still 14 months away, but the way things are shaping up right now, it may be dominated by post players. In its 2015 mock draft, DraftExpress.com has three of the first four picks, seven of the first 11 and 12 of the first 19 as players who stand 6-foot-9 or taller. Simply put, 2015 may prove to be one of the deepest years for big men in recent memory.

Leading this group is 6-foot-10 Duke-bound big man Jahlil Okafor, who scored 29 points to go with nine rebounds in picking up MVP honors as his East squad defeated the West, 158-147, at the Jordan Brand Classic on Friday evening at Barclays Center.

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Julius Randle Declares for NBA Draft

RandleKentucky forward Julius Randle became the latest freshman in this heralded class to announce for the NBA Draft when he held a press conference Tuesday.

The 6-foot-9 Randle is projected as the No. 4 pick in the Draft by DraftExpress.com. The three freshmen projected ahead of him — Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid and Jabari Parker — have all declared for the draft.

“I have decided to declare for the NBA Draft,” Randle said.

“Growing up as a kid it’s always been my dream to play in the NBA and there’s no better time to achieve that than now.”

Randle is the 12th one-and-done at Kentucky in five years, according to Kyle Tucker of the Courier-Journal.

“He is going to be a top-5 pick,” one veteran NBA scout told SNY.tv. “Skilled offensively but needs to develop a consistent 15-17-foot jump shot to become even more of a threat at the offensive end.” To read more of this story, click here

Julius Randle to Announce NBA Draft Plans Tuesday

RandleKentucky freshman forward Julius Randle is expected to announce his plans to enter the NBA Draft during a press conference slated for 1:30 p.m. Tuesday.

The 6-foot-9 Randle is projected as the No. 4 pick in the Draft by DraftExpress.com. The three freshmen projected ahead of him — Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid and Jabari Parker — have all declared for the draft.

One veteran NBA scout told SNY.tv NBA personnel think higher of Randle based on his strong play in the NCAA Tournament, where he helped lead the Wildcats to the championship game against UConn.

Randle averaged 15 points and 10.4 rebounds on the season, and 14.8 points and 9.8 rebounds in the NCAAs. He was limited to 10 points and 6 rebounds in the final when he was reportedly struggling with leg cramps. To read more of this story, click here

Aquille Carr Declares for the NBA Draft

Onetime Seton Hall commit Aquille Carr has officially declared for the NBA Draft.

“Aquille is excited about this next chapter in his career and is excited to fulfill his lifelong dream,” his agent, Daniel Hazan, told SNY.tv.

The 5-foot-6 Carr is not listed on the DraftExpress.com Mock Draft and is not projected to be drafted.

In a recent interview with Dime Magazine, Carr said he stays in touch with NBA guards John Wall and Brandon Jennings, who tell him to keep a positive outlook.

“I talk to a lot of people that are in the NBA,” he said. “Really they just tell me “Keep working, it’s not over. Just don’t give up. Don’t fall to the wrong people. Surround yourself with great people that are trying to do what you’re trying to do or make it to where you’re trying to make it to.’”

Carr was waived in January by the Delaware 87ers, the NBA D-League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers. He was averaging 10.7 points and 1.9 assists. To read more of this story, click here

Report: Harrisons Awaiting NBA Feedback Before Making Decision

HarrisonsKentucky freshmen guards Andrew and Aaron Harrison are awaiting feedback from the NBA before they decide whether or not to enter the NBA Draft, according to a report.

The deadline for declaring for the NBA Draft is April 27. The Draft is set for June 26 in New York.

“I just sent the paperwork in two or three days ago,” Aaron Harrison Sr. told MyFoxHouston.com. “I talked to a gentleman at the NBA and he said he would get it to me as fast as possible and then we’ll go from there.

“It’s important. You’re trying to find out what the prospects are for them and where they’ll be drafted and all those things.” To read more of this story, click here

James Young to the NBA Draft

Young_James_2013-14By JOSH NEWMAN
Special to ZAGSBLOG

James Young became the first Kentucky domino to fall as the school announced on Thursday afternoon that the freshman wing would enter the NBA Draft after just one season in Lexington.

A 6-foot-7 native of Rochester Hills, Mich., Young is the first Wildcat underclassman to declare for the draft. Fellow-freshman Julius Randle has not officially declared, but is expected to, while sophomore big man Willie Cauley-Stein announced he will return to school for his junior season. 

“He is one of the best shooters in the draft,” a veteran NBA scout told SNY.tv. “He is To read more of this story, click here

Poll: With Parker Declaring, Who Should be the No. 1 Pick in the NBA Draft?

Parker use thisJabari Parker officially declared for the NBA Draft on Thursday, ending any questions about whether he might return to Duke to join their loaded recruiting class for a run at the 2015 NCAA championship.

“I am now ready to take the leap to the NBA. It’s a dream come true,” Parker wrote in Sports Illustrated.

Some NBA personnel think the 6-foot-8 Parker is more prepared than fellow frosh superstars Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid and Julius Randle to contribute immediately at the NBA level.

“He is the most ready freshman to step in and help a team next year,” one former NBA executive told SNY.tv Thursday. To read more of this story, click here

UCLA’s Anderson and Lavine Declare for NBA Draft

Prairie View A&M at UCLAUCLA sophomore guard Kyle Anderson and freshman guard Zach LaVine both officially declared for the NBA Draft on Wednesday.

Anderson’s plans to head to the NBA were previously reported by SNY.tv.

One veteran NBA scout told SNY.tv Anderson is “potentially” a lottery pick, while LaVine is considered “late first.”

DraftExpress.com has the 6-foot-9 Anderson at No. 17 on its Mock Draft, and the 6-5 LaVine at No. 28.

A former star at St. Anthony and Paterson Catholic in New Jersey, Anderson secured first-team All-Pac-12 honors and was named a third-team Associated Press All-America selection as a sophomore in 2013-14. He averaged closer to a To read more of this story, click here

No Announcement Expected from Jabari Parker Wednesday

parkerJabari Parker will not announce his future plans on Wednesday, Duke basketball associate director of sports information Matt Plizga confirmed to SNY.tv Tuesday night.

The Chicago Tribune reported the development earlier in the day.

Plizga said reporters in Oklahoma City “misconstrued [Parker's] comments” Monday when he said he would meet this week with Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski and then decide whether or not to enter the NBA Draft. To read more of this story, click here