Cade Cunningham

Full List Of 2021 NBA Draft Combine Participants

The NBA has revealed via press release its list of 69 players who have been invited to next week’s draft combine in Chicago and who are expected to attend. The combine will take place from June 21-17.

While several of the prominent names at the top of the draft will opt to skip the event – most notably, presumed number one pick Cade Cunningham and Gonzaga’s Jalen Suggs – there are several high-profile prospects set to attend. Evan Mobley, widely considered a likely choice for the No. 2 pick as well as potential top-five picks Jonathan Kuminga and Jalen Green headline the class of participants this year, along with potential lottery picks Moses Moody, Corey Kispert and Scottie Barnes.

According to the press release, players will conduct interviews with NBA teams, participate in five-on-five games, and go through shooting, strength and agility drills throughout the week-long event. It’s likely that the more high-profile names will focus more on the interviews than the drills.

The press release also confirms that a select number of standout players from the G League Elite Camp will be invited to participate in the Combine as well.

Here’s the full list of 69 names announced by the NBA today, in alphabetical order:

  1. Max Abmas, G, Oral Roberts (sophomore)
  2. Ochai Agbaji, G, Kansas (junior)
  3. Marcus Bagley, F, Arizona State (freshman)
  4. Scottie Barnes, F, Florida State (freshman)
  5. Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky (junior)
  6. Brandon Boston Jr., G/F, Kentucky (freshman)
  7. James Bouknight, G, UConn (sophomore)
  8. Greg Brown, F, Texas (freshman)
  9. Jared Butler, G, Baylor (junior)
  10. Julian Champagnie, G/F, St. John’s (sophomore)
  11. Justin Champagnie, G/F, Pittsburgh (sophomore)
  12. Josh Christopher, G, Arizona State (freshman)
  13. Sharife Cooper, G, Auburn (freshman)
  14. Ayo Dosunmu, G, Illinois (junior)
  15. David Duke, G, Providence (junior)
  16. Kessler Edwards, F, Pepperdine (junior)
  17. Luka Garza, C, Iowa (senior)
  18. RaiQuan Gray, F, Florida State (junior)
  19. Jalen Green, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  20. Quentin Grimes, G, Houston (junior)
  21. Sam Hauser, F, Virginia (senior)
  22. Aaron Henry, G/F, Michigan State (junior)
  23. Ariel Hukporti, C, Lithuania (born 2002)
  24. Matthew Hurt, F, Duke (sophomore)
  25. Nah’Shon Hyland, G, VCU (sophomore)
  26. Isaiah Jackson, F, Kentucky (freshman)
  27. David Johnson, G, Louisville (sophomore)
  28. Jalen Johnson, F, Duke (freshman)
  29. Keon Johnson, G, Tennessee (freshman)
  30. Herb Jones, F, Alabama (senior)
  31. Kai Jones, F, Texas (sophomore)
  32. Johnny Juzang, G/F, UCLA (sophomore)
  33. Corey Kispert, F, Gonzaga (senior)
  34. Jonathan Kuminga, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  35. Scottie Lewis, G, Florida (sophomore)
  36. Isaiah Livers, F, Michigan (senior)
  37. Makur Maker, C, Howard (freshman)
  38. Sandro Mamukelashvili, F/C, Seton Hall (senior)
  39. Tre Mann, G, Florida (sophomore)
  40. Matthew Mayer, G/F, Baylor (junior)
  41. Miles McBride, G, West Virginia (sophomore)
  42. Davion Mitchell, G, Baylor (junior)
  43. Evan Mobley, F/C, USC (freshman)
  44. Isaiah Mobley, F, USC (sophomore)
  45. Moses Moody, G, Arkansas (freshman)
  46. Trey Murphy III, G, Virginia (junior)
  47. Daishen Nix, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  48. John Petty Jr., G, Alabama (senior)
  49. Yves Pons, G/F, Tennessee (senior)
  50. Jason Preston, G, Ohio (junior)
  51. Joshua Primo, G, Alabama (freshman)
  52. Roko Prkacin, F, Croatia (born 2002)
  53. Neemias Queta, C, Utah State (junior)
  54. Austin Reaves, G, Oklahoma (senior)
  55. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, F, Villanova (sophomore)
  56. Terrence Shannon Jr., G/F, Texas Tech (sophomore)
  57. Day’Ron Sharpe, F/C, North Carolina (freshman)
  58. Jericho Sims, F/C, Texas (senior)
  59. Jaden Springer, G, Tennessee (freshman)
  60. DJ Steward, G, Duke (freshman)
  61. Cameron Thomas, G, LSU (freshman)
  62. JT Thor, F, Auburn (freshman)
  63. Isaiah Todd, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  64. Trendon Watford, F, LSU (sophomore)
  65. Joe Wieskamp, G/F, Iowa (junior)
  66. Ziaire Williams, F, Stanford (freshman)
  67. McKinley Wright IV, G, Colorado (senior)
  68. Moses Wright, F, Georgia Tech (senior)
  69. Marcus Zegarowski, G, Creighton (junior)

Draft Notes: Giddey, Pro Days, Combine, G League Elite Camp

Potential lottery pick Josh Giddey isn’t expected to attend the NBA draft combine in Chicago or any pre-draft workouts, tweets Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report. Instead, scouts will get a look at Giddey later this month when his Australian team travels to Las Vegas for exhibition games with Team USA, Spain, Nigeria and Argentina.

The 6’8″ shooting guard has been moving up draft boards and ranks No. 13 on ESPN’s latest list of prospects. Giddey, 18, played this season with the Adelaide 36ers and averaged 10.9 points, 7.1 assists and 6.9 rebounds per game.

There’s more draft news to pass along:

Draft Notes: Maker, Hamilton, Riley, Green

Howard University freshman big man Makur Maker has declared for the draft but hasn’t hired an agent, leaving open the possibility of returning to college, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports. Maker, 20, played only two games for the Bison last season because of a groin injury, averaging 11.5 PPG, 6.0 RPG and 2.0 APG. The team played only five games before the university shut down the season due of COVID-19 issues. Maker is listed at No. 100 on ESPN’s Best Available list.

We have more draft decisions and news:

  • UNLV’s Bryce Hamilton will remain in the draft process but plans to return to school, Jeff Goodman of Stadium tweets. The Rebels guard averaged 17.9 PPG, 6.0 RPG and 3.0 APG last season as a junior.
  • UCLA’s Cody Riley will also enter the draft while retaining his college eligibility, Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports tweets. Riley, a junior forward, had 14 points, 10 rebounds and five assists against Gonzaga in the Final Four. In 31 starts last season, he averaged 10 PPG and 5.4 RPG. “I’ve encouraged Cody to take advantage of this time and this evaluation process. I know that he wants to see where he fits at the next level and where he needs to improve,” coach Mick Cronin told the Associated Press.
  • Cade Cunningham sits atop Jonathan Wasserman’s big board but the Bleacher Report analyst has a mild surprise in the No. 2 slot, with Jalen Green ranking above Evan Mobley. Jalen Suggs is a close fourth in Wasserman’s rankings.

Central Notes: Pistons, Bucks, Cunningham, Pacers

The Pistons will field an abundance of high-level talent on their 2021 Summer League team this August, details Keith Langlois of Pistons.com.

Detroit expects to have its draft selections from the 2019-2021 seasons on the Summer League roster. That will include current 2020/21 rookies Killian Hayes, Isaiah Stewart, Saddiq BeySaben Lee, and Deividas Sirvydis, plus second-year players Sekou Doumbouya and Tyler Cook. The Pistons are currently slated to have a high first-round pick, as well as three second-rounders, in the 2021 draft.

“It’s going to be a lot of blood, sweat and tears,” head coach Dwayne Casey said of the upcoming summer session in Las Vegas. “We’ve got to go to work. They’re going to be here working. If they’re going to have a Pistons uniform on, they’re going to work this summer.”

There’s more out of the Central Division:

  • The top prospect on the Pistons‘ draft board is 6’8″ Oklahoma State guard Cade Cunningham, notes Rod Beard of the Detroit News. Beard assesses other potential options for Detroit should the club end up in the 2-6 range instead of at No. 1. Cunningham averaged 20.1 PPG, 6.2 RPG, and 3.5 APG for the Cowboys, with a shooting line of .438/.400/.846.
  • Ahead of their playoff rematch against the Heat, the Bucks claim to know Miami’s game plan this year, writes Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. A Miami club that upset then-top-seeded Milwaukee in the second round of the 2020 playoffs appears confident it can do so in the first ahead of a 3-6 first-round matchup.
  • The Pacers will need to key in on transition defense for success in tonight’s in-progress play-in game against the Wizards, writes Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files“It’s a very big game for us to control the tempo and the pace that we want to play at,” head coach Nate Bjorkgren said. (Russell) Westbrook will rebound that thing, push it on the dribble, push it on the throw ahead. Their bigs run the floor very well. They got shooters running to the wings and the corners.” As of this writing, the Pacers have failed to contain Washington in the game’s first half.

Draft Notes: Edwards, Alatishe, Cunningham, Mobley, More

Pepperdine junior forward Kessler Edwards has decided to enter his name into the 2021 NBA draft pool, he tells Jonathan Givony of ESPN. While Edwards is maintaining his college eligibility for now, he expects to ultimately keep his name in the draft.

“I don’t think there’s a number in particular that I need to stay in the draft,” he told ESPN. “I’m hoping to receive interest from multiple teams and assurances that I would getting a solid deal and not end up being a free agent that no one picks up. I’m planning on going pro, going through this thing. I feel like most of these teams haven’t seen me in person and the work I’m doing getting ready in terms of my body, measurements and how I play on the court.”

Edwards, who is the No. 48 overall prospect on ESPN’s big board, has an intriguing combination of size, defensive versatility, and outside shooting that appeals to NBA teams, says Givony. In 27 games (33.9 MPG) in 2020/21, Edwards averaged 17.2 PPG and 6.8 RPG on .491/.378/.876 shooting.

Let’s round up a few more draft-related items…

  • Oregon State junior forward Warith Alatishe has decided to test the draft waters, a source tells Givony (Twitter link). The MVP of this year’s Pac-12 tournament, Alatishe averaged 9.5 PPG and 8.6 RPG in 33 games (27.4 MPG) for the Beavers in 2020/21.
  • Even though Evan Mobley and Jalen Suggs had more memorable runs in the NCAA tournament, scouts and evaluators still widely view Cade Cunningham as this year’s probable No. 1 pick, writes Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report. Mobley, Suggs, and Jalen Green are very likely to be the next three players off the board, though there’s still no consensus on the order, according to Wasserman, who says Mobley may have the slight edge at No. 2.
  • Within the same story, Wasserman examines the mixed opinions that evaluators have about a handful of draft prospects, including Davion Mitchell, Josh Christopher, and Cameron Thomas. He also suggests that Florida State forward RaiQuan Gray is a potential riser to watch during the pre-draft process, adding that Gray looks like a top-40 pick.

Cade Cunningham Declares For 2021 NBA Draft

Oklahoma State star and potential No. 1 overall pick Cade Cunningham formally announced on Thursday that he will enter the 2021 NBA draft, writes Cliff Brunt of The Associated Press.

The 6’8″ freshman guard was one of the most dynamic players in the nation during his first and only college season, averaging a conference-best 20.1 PPG to go along with 6.2 RPG, 3.5 APG, and 1.6 SPG. He had a shooting line of .438/.400/.846 in his 27 games with the Cowboys (35.4 MPG), winning the Wayman Tisdale Award as the NCAA’s top freshman.

Although Oklahoma State had a relatively early exit from the NCAA tournament, falling in the second round to Oregon State, that 80-70 defeat didn’t reflect poorly on Cunningham, who scored 24 points in the losing effort.

There are a handful of impressive young players expected to join Cunningham at the top of draft boards this year, including Evan Mobley, Jalen Suggs, Jalen Green, and Jonathan Kuminga. However, Cunningham has long been considered by draft experts to be the top prospect in the 2021 class and is the strong favorite to be the first player off the board on July 29.

As Jonathan Givony of ESPN notes in his scouting report of Cunningham, there are still some questions about whether the 19-year-old can be the go-to offensive creator for an NBA team. However, Cunningham’s size, physical tools, improved shooting touch, and defensive versatility make him a potential two-way force, says Givony.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Draft Notes: Cunningham, Top Shooters, Todd, Nix

With the NBA G League season nearly over and the NCAA tournament around the corner, Oklahoma State guard Cade Cunningham remains atop experts’ big boards for the 2021 NBA draft. The freshman capped off an impressive regular season by being named the Big 12 Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year, as the conference announced in a press release.

Cunningham averaged 19.7 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game with a .455/.425/.854 shooting line in 22 contests (35.1 MPG) in his first – and almost certainly only – college season. He’ll get a chance to further cement his claim as 2021’s top prospect in this week’s Big 12 tournament and during March Madness. Oklahoma State was banned from the postseason for a year, but their appeal to overturn that penalty is still pending, making the program eligible for the NCAA Tournament.

Here’s more on the 2021 NBA draft:

  • Sam Vecenie of The Athletic takes a look at the top shooters in the 2021 draft class, identifying WCC Player of the Year Corey Kispert (Gonzaga) as the No. 1 option. Joe Wieskamp (Iowa), Sam Hauser (Virginia), Isaiah Livers (Michigan), and Trey Murphy (Virginia) round out Vecenie’s top five.
  • The G League Ignite’s season is over, as the NBAGL’s select team – which features projected top-five picks Jalen Green and Jonathan Kuminga – was knocked out of the single-elimination postseason by the Raptors 905 on Monday. Jonathan Givony of ESPN (Insider link) examines what we learned about the Ignite’s prospects in the G League bubble, writing that Isaiah Todd boosted his stock with his play down the stretch, while Daishen Nix struggled a little. Todd is considered a first-round prospect by many NBA teams, but Nix is looking more like a second-rounder than a potential lottery pick, Givony adds.
  • The most recent big boards from Givony and Mike Schmitz at ESPN and from Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report have plenty of similarities in the lottery, but there are a few notable differences. Connecticut’s James Bouknight is No. 6 on Wasserman’s board and just 11th on ESPN’s, while Tennessee’s Jaden Springer is ranked 12th by Wasserman and all the way down at No. 39 by ESPN. Meanwhile, ESPN ranks Auburn’s Sharife Cooper and Kispert as top-10 prospects, while Wasserman has them 17th and 18th, respectively.

And-Ones: I. Thomas, Trades, Lin, Cunningham

While Isaiah Thomas is excited and honored to represent Team USA at the AmeriCup qualifiers in Puerto Rico this weekend, he admitted in a conversation with Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press that he’s also viewing the event as an opportunity to showcase himself for NBA teams.

“My ultimate goal is to play in the NBA as soon as possible,” Thomas said. “This allows me to compete against other professionals, represent my country at the same time — which is an honor and a privilege — and ultimately show NBA teams that I’m back to myself and I’m 100% healthy. That’s why I chose to come here. When Team USA brought it to me, it was a no-brainer.”

As Reynolds notes, the games themselves won’t mean much for Team USA, which has already qualified for the 2022 AmeriCup tournament by going undefeated in earlier qualifying games. But they’ll be significant for Thomas, who hasn’t played in an NBA game since being released by the Clippers last February. Veteran teammate Joe Johnson said Thomas has looked “great” in practices.

“One thing I’ll say: In pick and rolls, I think he’s probably going to be unstoppable,” Johnson said of Thomas. “Bigs, I don’t know what they’ll do. Do you get out and hedge? He’ll go around you and split you. Do you try to catch him? He’ll pull up for the jumper. He has a great arsenal. It’s been fun to watch him play, man. I will tell you that.”

Here are a few more odds and ends from across the basketball world:

Eastern Notes: Dellavedova, Pistons, Cavs, Heat

On opening night of the 2020/21 preseason, reserve Cavaliers point guard Matthew Dellavedova suffered a major concussion. His continued troubling symptoms two months later may impede his basketball future, according to Joe Vardon and Kelsey Russo of The Athletic. Dellavedova’s symptoms have prevented the 30-year-old vet from making much momentum in his recovery.

“He’s taking steps, but they’re small steps,” Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff said about the backup guard’s recovery last month. “With the history that he has, with the concussions, we’re taking every caution that we possibly can to make sure that he’s gonna be fully recovered first before we do anything with him.”

There’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

  • After the Pistons selected point guard Killian Hayes with the No. 7 pick in the 2020 draft, James L. Edwards III and Sam Vecenie of The Athletic posit that the 5-16 team should still consider drafting 6’7″ Oklahoma State ball handler Cade Cunningham if they have the opportunity to do so. Cunningham is averaging 18.3 PPG, 5.9 RPG and 3.5 APG for the Cowboys.
  • Though the Cavaliers have enjoyed an impressive 10-12 start to their 2020/21 season (good for the No. 7 seed in the East), Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com opines that the team needs to update its offense from a physical, bully-ball style to a more contemporary, three-point heavy output. “I definitely believe we need more 3s,” second-year guard Darius Garland said. “I don’t think we win any games just shooting all 2s. When we get player movement, we get open shots. And that’s when we knock them down. That’s when we are at our best.”
  • Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel speculates about how the Heat can improve their bench depth with potential minimum salary roster additions, especially given the team’s recent rash of short- and long-term player injuries and coronavirus-related player absences.

And-Ones: AmeriCup, Olympics, All-Star Break, Draft

USA Basketball issued a press release today announcing its 12-man roster for the AmeriCup qualifying tournament taking place in Puerto Rico later this month. Several players representing Team USA in games against The Bahamas on February 19 and Mexico on February 20 have already been reported, with former All-Stars Isaiah Thomas and Joe Johnson leading the way.

However, today’s announcement includes a few more players with NBA experience that we haven’t already passed along. Josh Boone, James Nunnally, and Jordan Sibert will also be part of the roster, per today’s announcement.

Here are more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • FIBA has revealed the groups for the Tokyo Olympics men’s basketball tournament, announcing today that Team USA will be part of Group A alongside France and Iran. The fourth team in the group will be the winner of a qualifying tournament that includes Canada, Greece, Turkey, China, the Czech Republic, and Uruguay..
  • While players will get a break from March 5-10, between the first and second halves of the season, they’ll have to undergo daily COVID-19 testing during that time and will likely be required to be back in their team’s market two days before the end of that break, says Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).
  • Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report released an updated version of his 2021 mock draft, as did ESPN’s Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz (Insider link). Both mocks have Cade Cunningham at No. 1, Evan Mobley at No. 2, and Jalen Suggs at No. 4, but disagree about which G League Ignite player should be at No. 3 — Wasserman has Jonathan Kuminga there, while Givony and Schmitz favor Jalen Green.