Blaz Mesicek

NBA’s Early Entrant Withdrawal Deadline Looms

The NCAA’s deadline for early entrants to withdraw from the 2018 NBA draft and retain their college eligibility came and went last month, with underclassmen deciding by May 30 whether or not they wanted to keep their names in the draft.

However, while NCAA eligibility rules dictated that those prospects had to make decisions early, the NBA’s own withdrawal deadline for early entrants arrives today. Any early entrant who remains undecided on whether to keep his name in the 2018 draft will have to make a final call by 4:00pm central time on Monday.

[RELATED: Key 2018 NBA offseason dates, deadlines]

Since college prospects have already made their decisions, today’s deadline generally only applies to international early entrants. There’s no shortage of those this year, as 55 international prospects showed up on the NBA’s official list of early entrants in April, including Luka Doncic, Elie Okobo, and many others. We have all those names right here.

That list of 55 names figures to be trimmed significantly once today’s deadline passes. In 2017, for instance, 46 international early entrants initially declared for the draft, but only 10 remained in the draft pool through the NBA’s withdrawal deadline.

BeoBasket agent Misko Raznatovic provided an update on some of his clients today, tweeting that Dzanan Musa (Croatia) will remain in the 2018 draft, while Vanja Marinkovic (Serbia), Blaz Mesicek (Italy), and Goga Bitadze (Serbia) are withdrawing. Musa’s decision is particularly notable, as he currently ranks as the 20th overall prospect on Jonathan Givony’s big board at

We’ll keep an eye out for any more noteworthy decisions from international early entrants today, and soon after Monday’s deadline passes, we’ll have an official list of 2018 early entrants straight from the NBA.

Draft Updates: Govindy, Pansa, Faye, Seaborn

The list of international prospects declaring for the 2018 NBA draft as early entrants continues to grow. As ESPN’s Jonathan Givony reports (via Twitter), three 1997-born big men currently playing in France are entering this year’s draft pool, per their agency Comsport. Those players are Melvyn Govindy, Jean-Marc Pansa, and Ibrahima Fall Faye. They’ll have until June 11 to decide whether to remain in the 2018 draft or withdraw their names. If they pull out of this year’s event, they’ll be draft-eligible in 2019.

Here are a few more draft notes:

  • Givony has updates on two more international early entrants declaring for the draft, reporting that Turkish forward Muhaymin Mustafa and Congolese center Viny Okouo have both made themselves eligible (Twitter link). While Okouo was born in 1997, Mustafa was born in 1999, which means he’d have two more chances to enter the draft early if he withdraws his name this year.
  • Slovenian shooting guard Blaz Mesicek has elected to enter the draft as an early entrant, per agent Misko Raznatovic (Twitter link). The 1997-born prospect has averaged 9.7 PPG and shot 40.8% on three-pointers in 26 games for Brindisi in the Italian League.
  • Monmouth junior guard Micah Seaborn announced in a post on Instagram that he has opted to enter the NBA draft without hiring an agent. Seaborn established new career highs in 2017/18 with 13.7 PPG and a .436/.442/.887 shooting line.
  • Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders breaks down the 2018 NBA draft class in tiers, with a three-player top tier of “potential future All-Stars” leading the way.

And-Ones: Salary Cap, Draft, Jersey Ads

Croatian power forward Marko Arapovic will enter this year’s NBA draft, as he announced on Twitter, and the same is true for Slovenian shooting guard Blaz Mesicek, as his agent, Benjamin Stevic, told Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress (Twitter link). Both hold a degree of intrigue, with Givony having slotted the 6’6″, 18-year-old Mesicek at No. 32 in his 2017 mock draft, though he’s not in Givony’s top 100 prospects for this year. The 6’9″, 19-year-old Arapovic is 96th among this year’s prospects, as Givony ranks them, and he’s No. 100 with Chad Ford of International prospects aren’t bound to NCAA rules, so they can hire agents and withdraw from the draft as late as June 13th.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The latest official projection for next year’s salary cap is $92MM, according to a memo the NBA sent to executives around the league, notes Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today (Twitter link). That’s an increase on the $90MM projection reported in February, though many had already estimated the cap would wind up in the $92MM to $95MM range.
  • Owners sense the league is prosperous and the collective bargaining agreement is working, commissioner Adam Silver said today about this week’s board of governors meetings, as Ken Berger of relays (Twitter link). Silver remains optimistic about avoiding a work stoppage next year as negotiations with the players union progress toward a new labor deal, tweets Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post.
  • The addition of jersey ads, which the board of governors have formally approved for the start of the 2017/18 season, are liable to raise the salary cap $2MM to $3MM annually based on projections circulating around the league, reports Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link). Silver estimates the ads will generate $100MM in annual revenue, according to Darren Rovell of (Twitter link).
  • French power forward/center Mathias Lessort intends to enter the 2016 NBA draft, announced (via Twitter). The 20-year-old is a long shot to be selected, not appearing among the top 100 players on either Ford’s or Givony’s rankings.
  • Vanderbilt junior center Damian Jones intends to enter the draft and will sign with Austin Brown of CAA, Jeff Goodman of relays (Twitter links). Jones is ranked as the No. 21 overall prospect by Givony and comes in at No. 43 according to Ford. Jones has long planned to go into the draft this year, having said as much in October.
  • Former Pelicans big man Jarnell Stokes was named the MVP of the NBA D-League, the Sioux Falls Skyforce announced. In 28 D-League appearances, Stokes averaged 20.6 points and 9.3 rebounds in 30.7 minutes per contest.
  • Wichita State senior shooting guard Ron Baker has signed with agent Aaron Mintz of CAA, Goodman tweets. The 23-year-old is the No. 98 overall prospect in this year’s draft according to Givony.

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.