Many talent evaluators around the NBA wish the talented but raw Joel Embiid would stay in school for another year, according to Chad Ford of ESPN.com, who debates the freshman Kansas center with fellow ESPN.com scribe Kevin Pelton for an Insider-only piece. NBA teams usually want to see intriguing collegians enter the draft, so the stance on Embiid is an unusual one, as Ford explains. The 19-year-old is the No. 1 prospect on Ford’s Big Board. Here’s more from the Association:
- Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star doesn’t get the sense that the Pacers will sign Bynum just to keep him away from the Heat, but Kravitz believes Indiana should take a low-risk flier on the big man regardless of where he might otherwise end up.
- An Eastern Conference scout didn’t think the trade that brought in Rudy Gay would go as well as it has for the Kings, telling Marc Stein of ESPN.com that the move has made the team “relevant again.”
- Johan Petro announced via Twitter that he’s left the Guangsha Lions of China, so it appears he’s free to sign with any team (translation via Sportando’s Emiliano Carchia). The 27-year-old center spent each of the past eight seasons in the NBA.
- The Bulls had next season in mind when they signed D.J. Augustin, but it’s unclear whether the team or the point guard will want to continue their relationship beyond 2013/14, as Sam Smith of Bulls.com writes in his latest mailbag column.
- Former 11th overall pick Jerome Moiso has retired, reports L’Equipe (translation via Carchia). Moiso spent five seasons in the NBA after the Celtics drafted him in 2000. He finished last season with Piratas de Quebradillas in Puerto Rico.
- Louisiana-Lafayette point guard Elfrid Payton is a fast riser in the eyes of many NBA teams, tweets Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times. Ford has the 6’4″ junior at No. 54 in his ESPN.com rankings, while Payton is No. 64 for Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.