DeVante' Jones

Draft Notes: Champagnie, Wiggins, Green, Onu, Kopp, Jones

Power forward Julian Champagnie is withdrawing from the draft and returning to Saint John’s, writes ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. The 6’8 forward had bolstered his stock in the pre-draft process due to his combination of defense, athleticism and shooting, but not as much as he would have liked.

I enjoyed the process, but I didn’t put myself in the spot I wanted to, partially because of a wrist injury I suffered early on that set me back mentally and physically,” Champagnie said. “…I am not sure exactly where I would have gotten drafted, what part of the second round. Being in that spot in the draft, I felt it wouldn’t hurt me to go back to school.

We have more news from the draft:

  • Aaron Wiggins will remain in the draft, reports ESPN’s Givony. The 6’6″ athletic forward was a standout at the G League Elite Camp and says he’s interviewed with seven NBA teams. “I’ve shown teams things they’ve never seen before,” Wiggins said. “Teams have been surprised by what I showed. I’ve loved the information and feedback I’ve received and didn’t want to wait until the last minute with my decision.”
  • Kelly Iko of The Athletic profiles potential top-three pick Jalen Green. Within his story, Iko discusses Green’s path that led him to choose the G League over college, as well as his maturity in accepting guidance from the older members of his G League Ignite team. “It’s a lot of kids out here like, ‘This old dude can’t tell me nothing’ or they won’t try to listen,” teammate Bobby Brown said, referencing Green and his fellow rookies-to-be. “But they were all students of the game, all sponges.”
  • EJ Onu of Shawnee State will keep his name in the draft, tweets Givony. The 6’11 center measured into the G League Elite Camp with a 7’8.5″ wingspan and shot 40% from three on 130 attempts. Onu is projected to be a mid-to-late second round pick.
  • Miller Kopp has withdrawn his name from the 2021 NBA draft process, reports Jeff Goodman of Stadium. The 6’7 forward, who has played three seasons with Northwestern, is transferring to Indiana University.
  • DeVante’ Jones has withdrawn from the pre-draft process and will return to school, reports Givony. Jones, a standout point guard for Coastal Carolina University, will be transferring to Michigan for his senior year.

NBA G League Announces 40 Draft-Eligible Participants For Elite Camp

The NBA G League has announced in a press release that 40 draft-eligible prospects are set to participate in the NBAGL Elite Camp next week in Chicago from June 19-21.

The G League Elite Camp is back this year after being canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The event, which takes place right before the draft combine, will give a few dozen draft-eligible players an opportunity to impress scouts, coaches, and executives through strength and agility drills and 5-on-5 games.

As today’s announcement confirms, a select number of draft-eligible prospects participating in the G League Elite Camp will also be invited to attend the combine itself, which is scheduled for June 21-27 in Chicago.

The list of draft-eligible players who took part in the most recent G League Elite Camp in 2019 included a handful of prospects who were eventually drafted, such as Terance Mann, Cody Martin, Justin Wright-Foreman, Reggie Perry, and Dewan Hernandez.

Many of the draft-eligible participants in the 2019 Elite Camp also made it to the NBA after going undrafted, including Oshae Brissett, Chris Clemons, Tyler Cook, Tacko Fall, DaQuan Jeffries, Caleb Martin, Justin Robinson, and Max Strus.

Two years ago, this event also featured 40 G League veterans, for a total of 80 players. Based on today’s press release, it sounds like this year’s Elite Camp may be pared down to only include draft-eligible prospects, though it’s possible the NBAGL will announce more names within the next few days.

Here are the 40 draft-eligible prospects participating in the 2021 G League Elite Camp:

  1. Derrick Alston Jr. (Boise State)
  2. Keve Aluma (Virginia Tech)
  3. Jose Alvarado (Georgia Tech)
  4. Juhann Begarin (France)
  5. Chaundee Brown (Michigan)
  6. Jordan Burns (Colgate)
  7. Marcus Carr (Minnesota)
  8. D.J. Carton (Marquette)
  9. Moussa Cisse (Memphis)
  10. Kofi Cockburn (Illinois)
  11. Oscar Da Silva (Stanford)
  12. Darius Days (LSU)
  13. Hunter Dickinson (Michigan)
  14. Dawson Garcia (Marquette)
  15. Marcus Garrett (Kansas)
  16. Haowen Guo (China)
  17. Jay Huff (Virginia)
  18. DeJon Jarreau (Houston)
  19. Carlik Jones (Louisville)
  20. DeVante’ Jones (Coastal Carolina)
  21. Balsa Koprivica (Florida State)
  22. A.J. Lawson (South Carolina)
  23. E.J. Liddell (Ohio State)
  24. Mac McClung (Texas Tech)
  25. JaQuori McLaughlin (UCSB)
  26. Matt Mitchell (San Diego State)
  27. RJ Nembhard (TCU)
  28. Eugene Omoruyi (Oregon)
  29. EJ Onu (Shawnee State)
  30. Scotty Pippen Jr. (Vanderbilt)
  31. Orlando Robinson (Fresno State)
  32. Aamir Simms (Clemson)
  33. Javonte Smart (LSU)
  34. Mike Smith (Michigan)
  35. D.J. Stewart (Mississippi State)
  36. MaCio Teague (Baylor)
  37. M.J. Walker (Florida State)
  38. Duane Washington (Ohio State)
  39. Aaron Wiggins (Maryland)
  40. Jalen Wilson (Kansas)

And-Ones: Vanterpool, Mack, Championship, Jones

Longtime Blazers assistant David Vanterpool could receive strong consideration for multiple head coaching vacancies across the league, Jordan Schultz of ESPN tweets.

The Celtics, Magic and Blazers all recently opened up their head coaching positions, with more teams potentially on the horizon. Many league observers are monitoring the Pacers and Pelicans after both clubs finished with underwhelming campaigns.

Vanterpool, who has been linked to past coaching vacancies, served as Minnesota’s associate head coach this season, but he won’t return to the team for 2021/22. Prior to joining the Wolves, he spent five years as an assistant with CSKA Moscow and seven years as an assistant with Portland.

Here are some other odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • Former NBA guard Shelvin Mack has left Panathinaikos in Greece, according to SDNA.com (hat tip to Sportando). Mack departed from the club due to personal reasons. The 31-year-old was drafted at No. 34 overall in 2011 and holds eight years of NBA experience, the most recent of which was with Charlotte in 2018/19.
  • David Aldridge of The Athletic examines how the past failures of some teams could provide fuel in the championship race this season. The Bucks and Clippers are two prime examples of such, with Milwaukee getting revenge against Miami in the first round and Los Angeles avoiding another playoff collapse on Sunday.
  • Michigan transfer DeVante’ Jones has received an invite to the G League Elite Camp, which is set to be held from June 19-21 in Chicago, a source told Hoops Rumors. Jones remains an intriguing mid-major prospect for the draft, averaging 19.3 points per game with Coastal Carolina last season. The 23-year-old also averaged 7.2 rebounds per game and finished third in the NCAA in steals per game (2.8). For more information on draft-related dates and deadlines this year, click here.

Draft Updates: Mitchell, Jones, Cisse, Bacot, Minaya

On the heels of winning a national championship, Baylor guard Davion Mitchell has decided to hire an agent and declare for the 2021 NBA draft, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

The Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year this season, Mitchell enjoyed a career year as a junior, boosting his averages to 14.1 PPG and 5.5 APG in 30 games (33.0 MPG), while shooting an impressive 51.1% from the floor, including 44.7% on three-pointers. He played a team-high 36 minutes in Baylor’s championship win over Gonzaga.

Mitchell’s strong showing in the NCAA tournament bumped him up several spots on ESPN’s big board — he now projects to be a potential lottery pick, coming in as this year’s No. 12 prospect.

Here are a few more draft updates from around college basketball:

  • Sun Belt Player of the Year DeVante’ Jones has declared for the 2021 NBA draft while retaining his college eligibility, he announced on Twitter. As a junior at Coastal Carolina this season, the 6’1″ guard averaged 19.3 PPG, 7.2 RPG, 2.9 APG, and 2.8 SPG on .487/.368/.862 shooting line in 26 games (32.8 MPG).
  • Memphis freshman center Moussa Cisse is testing the draft waters, he announced Tuesday on Twitter. Cisse was the AAC Rookie of the Year in 2020/21, averaging 6.6 PPG, 6.3 RPG, and 1.6 BPG in 28 games (18.6 MPG).
  • North Carolina sophomore forward Armando Bacot will go through the draft process while retaining his NCAA eligibility, he said in a Tuesday announcement (Twitter link). Bacot was UNC’s leading scorer and rebounder this season, with 12.3 PPG and 7.8 RPG in 29 games (22.7 MPG)
  • South Carolina redshirt junior forward Justin Minaya has decided to test the draft waters while entering the transfer portal, he announced on Instagram. Minaya averaged just 7.0 PPG on 38.4% shooting in 20 games (30.2 MPG) in 2020/21, though he did chip in 6.3 RPG.
  • Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report updated his board of this year’s top 50 prospects following the NCAA tournament.