Kentucky sophomore center Dakari Johnson will enter this year’s NBA draft, Josh Newman of SNY.tv reports. The University has a press conference scheduled for tomorrow that “will include UK players who are ready to announce their NBA Draft decisions, as well as head coach John Calipari,” the school has announced. The Wildcats could lose as many as seven players to the NBA next season, including Andrew Harrison and Aaron Harrison, who also reportedly intend to formally announce their decisions to leave Kentucky on Thursday as well.
The seven-footer is currently projected to be a second round pick, though I suspect that Johnson will creep into the first round after his individual pre-draft workouts are complete. Chad Ford of ESPN.com (Insider subscription required) has Johnson ranked as the No. 39 overall prospect, and Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.com has him slotted at No. 40.
Johnson’s numbers weren’t all that eye-popping thanks to the Wildcats’ ridiculous frontcourt depth. In 39 games this season Johnson averaged 6.4 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 0.9 blocks in 16.3 minutes per contest. His career numbers are 5.8 PPG and 4.3 RPG. Johnson’s career NCAA shooting numbers are .537/.000/.559.