A.J. Lawson

More Draft Decisions: Claxton, Bassey, Nowell, More

Draft decisions by this year’s early entrants continue to flood in as the NCAA’s May 29 withdrawal deadline nears. After relaying those decisions in a pair of posts already today, we’ve got more in the space below:

  • Georgia sophomore forward Nicolas Claxton will keep his name in the 2019 NBA draft pool, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, who tweets that Claxton is a potential first-round pick.
  • According to Jeff Goodman of Stadium (via Twitter), Western Kentucky freshman center Charles Bassey will stay in the 2019 draft pool, barring a last-second change of heart. Bassey is the No. 80 prospect on Givony’s big board at ESPN.com.
  • Washington sophomore guard Jaylen Nowell is another early entrant who has decided to forgo his remaining NCAA eligibility and stay in the draft, Goodman tweets. Nowell comes in at No. 92 on Givony’s big board.
  • Kentucky’s Nick Richards, a sophomore forward, will return to the Wildcats for at least one more season, he announced today in a video on Instagram.
  • South Carolina will get guard A.J. Lawson back for his sophomore year, as he announced today (via Twitter) that he’s withdrawing his name from the draft.
  • Bethune-Cookman head coach Ryan Ridder has informed Goodman (Twitter link) that both of his early entrants, Malik Maitland and Cletrell Pope, are heading back to school for another year.
  • Ohio State forward Kaleb Wesson is pulling out of the draft to return to the Buckeyes for his junior season, tweets Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports.
  • Bowling Green guard Justin Turner is heading back to school for his junior season, per Rothstein (via Twitter).
  • Weber State guard Jerrick Harding will withdraw from the draft and return to school for his senior season, he announced today (via Twitter).
  • Hampton junior guard Jermaine Marrow is withdrawing from the draft and retaining his NCAA eligibility, coach Buck Joyner tells Goodman (Twitter link).

Draft Updates: K. Johnson, Silva, Lawson, Toppin, More

Like Kentucky teammates PJ Washington and Tyler Herro, freshman guard Keldon Johnson has decided that he’ll keep his name in the 2019 NBA draft pool rather than leaving the door open to return to the Wildcats, the school announced in a press release.

Johnson’s decision to forgo his remaining NCAA eligibility doesn’t come as a real surprise. Like Washington and Herro, Johnson is projected to be a first-round pick, coming in as the No. 20 prospect on Jonathan Givony’s big board at ESPN.com.

Speaking of that big board, another prospect in that top 100 has declared for the 2019 NBA draft, according to Givony, who reports that Brazilian wing Marcos Lousada Silva has submitted the necessary paperwork.

Silva, the 61st overall prospect on ESPN’s board, impressed scouts and executives at the Nike Hoops Summit in Portland, and has had a productive season in the Brazilian league. NBA scouts have taken notice of the youngster’s high energy level and defensive versatility, Givony adds.

The following prospects are also testing the 2019 NBA draft waters as early entrants, joining the ever-growing list: