Caleb Martin

Draft Decisions: McDaniels, Cody & Caleb Martin

Forward Jalen McDaniels will return to San Diego State for his sophomore season, tweets Jeff Goodman of ESPN. McDaniels is part of a crop of late decision makers who waited until shortly before tonight’s deadline of 11:59pm Eastern to announce whether they are staying in the draft.

“After thoughtful consideration with my family and coaching staff, I have decided to return to San Diego State for my sophomore year.” McDaniels posted on Twitter“I’m looking forward to furthering my education and returning to the NCAA Tournament. Go Aztecs!”

McDaniels averaged 10.5 points and 7.5 rebounds in his first year at San Diego State. He held workouts with Cavaliers, ClippersTimberwolvesJazz, Warriors, CelticsNets, Hawks, Bucks, Spurs and Bulls, according to Mark Zeigler of The San Diego Union-Tribune.

In another significant last-minute decision, Nevada stars Cody Martin and Caleb Martin will both return to school, tweets Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports. Cody is ranked 90th and Caleb is 91st in the list of top 100 prospects compiled by ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, but Jeff Goodman of ESPN suggests the Wolf Pack could be a top 10 team next season with both staying (Twitter link).

There’s also news to pass along on pre-draft workouts:

Draft Workouts: Jazz, Ball, Ona Embo, Pinson

Armed with the 21st and 52nd overall picks in next month’s draft, the Jazz are taking a look at a wide range of prospects this week, according to the team.

On Tuesday, the Jazz brought in Jaylen Barford (Arkansas), Trevon Bluiett (Xavier), Dwight Coleby (Western Kentucky), Jock Landale (St. Mary’s), Caleb Martin (Nevada), and Kenneth Ogbe (Utah Valley) for auditions (Twitter links).

The team’s series of workouts continued today with Keita Bates-Diop (Ohio State), Chimezie Metu (USC), Shamorie Ponds (St. John’s), PJ Washington (Kentucky), Mustapha Heron (Auburn), and Matt Mobley (St. Bonaventure) earning a look from the Jazz (Twitter link).

Here’s more pre-draft workout news from around the league:

  • After a stint in Lithuania, LiAngelo Ball has returned stateside to audition for NBA teams ahead of the 2018 draft. According to Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype (Twitter link), Lonzo Ball‘s younger brother interviewed with the Thunder and Suns at the Pro Basketball Combine, and has private workouts on tap with the Lakers, Clippers, and Warriors.
  • A report earlier this week indicated that Tulane’s Ray Ona Embo is expected to withdraw from the draft, but it appears he’s going through with his scheduled workouts before making a final decision. Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated (Twitter link) hears from Ona Embo’s brother that the sophomore guard has a workout with the Hornets lined up for Friday.
  • Former UNC wing Theo Pinson has worked out for the Celtics and Timberwolves so far, and will audition for the Rockets on Thursday, tweets Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com. Pinson also has a Knicks workout on his calendar for June 12, Zagoria adds.
  • According to Zagoria (via Twitter), Syracuse early entrant Tyus Battle is working out for the Magic on Wednesday.

Draft Notes: Robinson, Kings, Bluiett, Rorie, Caldwell

Despite reports suggesting otherwise, the Lakers aren’t believed to have made a promise to Mitchell Robinson to take him in the first round, Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders tweets. Robinson skipped last week’s combine and a report surfaced that the Lakers made a pledge to him with the No. 25 overall pick. The seven-footer did not play college basketball, as he withdrew from Western Kentucky as a freshman last September to focus on the draft. He’s ranked as the No. 22 prospect on ESPN Jonathan Givony’s Top 100 list.

In other draft-related developments:

Draft Notes: Ponds, Lakers, Grizzlies, Cavaliers

The NBA draft lottery is still a week away, but teams have already started bringing in prospects for pre-draft workouts. Those workouts are especially important for early entrants who are still testing the waters, since they’re a great opportunity for those players to find out where they stand with NBA teams.

One of those players is St. John’s guard Shamorie Ponds, who entered the draft process this spring as a sophomore, and will have until May 30 to decide whether to withdraw and return to school for his junior year. According to Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com (Twitter link), Ponds has already worked out for the Celtics, and has auditions for the Nets and Cavaliers lined up this weekend.

Here are a few more draft-related updates, with a focus on workouts:

Draft Updates: Spalding, Martin Twins, Huell, More

After announcing last month that he’d be testing the 2018 NBA draft waters, Louisville power forward Ray Spalding has decided to forgo his final year of NCAA eligibility. In a post on his Instagram page, Spalding called his three years at Louisville a “journey like none other” and confirmed that he’d be hiring an agent and going pro.

The No. 56 prospect on Jonathan Givony’s big board at ESPN.com, Spalding averaged 12.3 PPG and 8.7 RPG in his junior year for the Cardinals, contributing on the defensive end with 1.7 BPG and 1.5 SPG.

Here are a few more of the latest draft notes and updates:

  • Three juniors from the University of Nevada have declared their intent to enter the 2018 NBA draft without hiring agents. Twin forwards Cody Martin and Caleb Martin will test the draft waters, along with teammate Jordan Caroline (all Twitter links). The Martin twins each earned a spot on Givony’s ESPN big board, coming in at No. 87 and No. 96, respectively.
  • Miami sophomore forward Dewan Huell announced (via Twitter) that he has decided to test the 2018 draft waters without hiring an agent. A 6’11” big man, Huell is coming off a 2017/18 season in which he posted 11.4 PPG and 6.7 RPG for the Hurricanes.
  • Junior guard Barry Brown is entering the draft, but won’t hire an agent, giving him the option of returning to Kansas State for his senior year (Twitter link). Brown averaged 15.9 PPG, 3.2 APG, 3.1 RPG, and 1.8 SPG for the Wildcats in 2017/18.
  • Junior guard Chris Clemons, who became Campbell’s all-time leading scorer this season, will test the draft waters, as Evan Moesta of MillbrookBasketball.com details. Clemons averaged 24.9 PPG in his junior year after putting up 25.1 PPG as a sophomore.
  • With the NCAA Tournament in the books, Sean Deveney of The Sporting News spoke to an NBA scout and GM about which prospects increased their value during March Madness, while Evan Daniels of 247Sports.com examines the rising stock of Villanova’s Donte DiVincenzo, the star of Monday’s championship game.