Emoni Bates is the number one player in the country, according to ESPN’s basketball rankings for the class of 2022. While most kids would join a blue blood program (he’s committed to Michigan State) in their one season before the NBA, times have changed. According to Brendan Quinn of The Athletic, many sources think that Bates will forgo his college eligibility to play in the G League, just as top 2020 recruit Jalen Green did.
“Of all the sources interviewed for this story, those existing in and out of the Bates’ camp, no one seems to believe Emoni will play at Michigan State,” Quinn wrote. “Instead, Bates most likely will wait for a professional contract, probably the most lucrative the G League can muster, and turn professional before heading to the NBA.”
However, according to Emoni’s father, Elgin Bates, no decision has been made just yet, as Adam Zagoria of Forbes writes.
“If the G League is something he wants to do, if he decides that’s what he wants to do, that’s perfectly fine,” the elder Bates said, via Zagoria. “He can do the G League. If Michigan State is what he wants to do, that’s perfectly fine. If he wants to entertain going overseas, that’s perfectly fine. If he just wants to sit out and train for a year, it’s whatever he wants to do. It’s his decision.”
Here are a few more tip-ins from around the basketball world:
- A handful of ESPN experts (Insider link) shared the trades they’d like to see happen ahead of the NBA’s March 25th trading deadline. The potential swaps ESPN’s insiders proposed included a three-team trade that would send Kyle Lowry home to Philadelphia, Aaron Gordon going to the Timberwolves, and the Clippers acquiring George Hill.
- According to a study published in JAMA Cardiology, fewer than 1% of pro athletes infected by COVID-19 also developed inflammatory heart disease. “Only time will tell if, five years from now, we’ll have an epidemic of failed hearts,” said Dr. Robert Bonow, a cardiologist at Northwestern University and editor of JAMA Cardiology who was not affiliated with the study, per ESPN’s Kevin Seifert. “But I think that is unlikely.”
- Ekpe Udoh, who spent seven seasons in the NBA for the Warriors, Bucks, Clippers and Jazz, has landed a deal to play in China for the Beijing Royal Fighers, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando.