Keegan Murray

Draft Notes: Ivey, Murray, Sharpe, Daniels, Roddy, Minott, Segu

While Chet Holmgren, Jabari Smith and Paolo Banchero are the consensus top three prospects in this year’s draft, it’s rare that the top three picks in a draft end up being the three players who enjoy the best pro careers, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz.

The ESPN duo identifies Jaden Ivey, Keegan Murray, Shaedon Sharpe and Dyson Daniels as the other prospects who are the best bets to emerge as top-three players from the 2022 draft class, breaking down the strengths of that quartet and considering which lottery teams might benefit the most from their talents.

We have plenty of draft-related news to pass along:

  • Colorado State’s David Roddy has worked out for the Magic, Nuggets and Rockets, Darren Wolfson of KSTP tweets. The power forward is ranked No. 47 on ESPN’s Best Available list.
  • Memphis forward Josh Minott has workouts lined up with the Magic, Raptors, Hawks, Spurs, Bulls and Hornets, Adam Zagoria of Zagsblog.com tweets. Minott is ranked No. 48 on ESPN’s Best Available list.
  • Buffalo guard Ronaldo Segu will continue to pursue professional opportunities and forgo his remaining year of college eligibility, Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports tweets. He averaged 14.9 PPG and 5.1 APG last season.
  • Nathan Mensah is withdrawing from the draft and returning to San Diego State, the school announced in a press release. Mensah is the reigning Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year.
  • Josh Mballa is pulling out of the draft and transferring from Buffalo to Ole Miss, Jeff Goodman tweets. Mballa averaged 13.0 PPG and 8.6 RPG last season.
  • Texas Tech guard Adonis Arms has workouts scheduled with the Nuggets, Pistons, Pelicans, Magic and Jazz, Keith Smith of Spotrac tweets.
  • Northern Colorado’s Bodie Hume will remain in the draft, Rothstein adds in another tweet. The senior forward averaged 11.0 PPG and 6.2 RPG last season.
  • Potential top-10 selection Johnny Davis wants to model his game after Devin Booker. Another potential top-10 pick, Daniels, believes he’s a combination of Tyrese Haliburton offensively and Alex Caruso or Lonzo Ball defensively. Numerous draft prospects told The Athletic’s Mike Vorkunov which NBA players they most closely resemble or strive to be.

Eastern Draft Notes: Pistons, Pacers, Nets, Knicks

Assuming Chet Holmgren, Jabari Smith, and Paolo Banchero are the top three picks in next month’s draft, the Pistons are expected to zero in on four potential targets at No. 5, sources tell James L. Edwards III of The Athletic. Those players are Jaden Ivey, Keegan Murray, Shaedon Sharpe, and Bennedict Mathurin.

All four prospects intrigue the Pistons, according to Edwards, who says that Murray is considered the most well-rounded of the four, while Sharpe is viewed as a “high-upside gamble.” Edwards adds that some sources believe Mathurin is the best wing in this year’s draft class, while there’s little consensus on Ivey, who is regarded as a top-three prospect by some evaluators and is outside the top five for others.

Here are a few more draft-related notes from around the Eastern Conference:

  • James Akinjo (Baylor), Keon Ellis (Alabama), Justin Lewis (Marquette), and David Roddy (Colorado State) are participating in a pre-draft workout with the Pacers on Monday, per Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files (Twitter links). Gonzaga’s Andrew Nembhard and UCLA’s Johnny Juzang had also been scheduled to take part, but were unable to make it due to weather-related travel issues.
  • Villanova’s Collin Gillespie has worked out for the Nets and has about 10 more pre-draft workouts on tap following the draft combine, tweets Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com.
  • According to Zagoria (Twitter link), Michigan State’s Gabe Brown has workouts with the Hornets and Magic on tap this week after previously auditioning for the Celtics, Nets, and Knicks.
  • Marc Berman of The New York Post explores whether Malaki Branham could be a legitimate target at No. 11 for the Knicks, who met with the Ohio State sharpshooter at last week’s combine.

California Notes: Green, Wiggins, Kings, Howard

Warriors power forward Draymond Green is convinced that he has reached a new level in these playoffs, writes Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN.

Youngmisuk notes that, as the main defender on a Mavericks shooter in Game 2, Green limited Dallas players to 4-of-15 shooting from the floor. That stat also includes those Mavericks players going 0-of-9 from long range against Green. The Warriors currently lead the Mavericks 2-0 in their Western Conference Finals series.

“[Opposing players] had a hard time dealing with me before,” Green said of his performance in prior playoff runs, which include three titles. “[But] I’m in a space now that’s a totally different, better space. Not even close. Much, much better than I was in before.”

There’s more out of California:

  • Warriors forward Andrew Wiggins, dealing with a sore left ankle, will suit up for this evening’s Game 3 contest against the Mavericks despite the injury, per Marc Stein (via Twitter). “It was just a little tweak, I just came down on it wrong,” Wiggins told reporters in remarks this morning, per Anthony Slater of The Athletic (Twitter video link).
  • The Kings saw several top draft prospects during some recent agency pro day workouts, per Sean Cunningham of Fox 40 (KTXL) (Twitter link). Cunningham reports that LSU forward Tari Eason, Mega Soccerbet forward Nikola Jovic, Duke center Mark Williams, Milwaukee guard Patrick Baldwin Jr., and Iowa forward Keegan Murray all participated.
  • Michigan head coach and former All-Star big man Juwan Howard turned down recent interest from the Lakers to interview for the team’s vacant head coaching position, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. Howard intends to remain in Ann Arbor to coach his two sons next year. Howard last interviewed for the gig in 2019, before the Lakers ultimately hired Frank Vogel.

Draft Notes: Sochan, Murray, Daniels, Walton, Mayer

Jeremy Sochan doesn’t mind being thought of as irritating, writes David Aldridge of The Athletic. The Baylor forward, who has gone from a fringe first-rounder to a likely lottery pick in a matter of months, sees aggressive, annoying defense as his ticket to success in the NBA.

“I’ve always had that little edge,” he said. “My mom, she was my first coach, and to this day, she tells me defense comes first. … She used to tell me to be cheeky, being able to see the play two steps ahead. So, I feel with that, being cheeky, maybe getting into people’s spaces, can separate their games, and they can play worse. There’s examples: Draymond (Green), Patrick (Beverley), Jrue (Holiday), so there’s so many. I feel like I can be one of those in the next step.”

Sochan was the main attraction Friday in Chicago at an eight-player workout staged by Tandem Sports + Entertainment. At least nine NBA teams had representatives at the session, according to Aldridge, including the Spurs and Knicks, who both interviewed Sochan during the Draft Combine. San Antonio holds the ninth pick and New York has No. 11, which is about the range where Sochan is expected to be taken.

“We did a little bit (of defense) at the end, with the two-on-two, the screen work, but you can’t really show too much,” Sochan said after the session ended. “I feel like they’re going to have that in mind, and when I go to team workouts, I’ll be able to show a little bit more of that. And whoever picks me, I’ll be able to show that in practices and games.”

There’s more on the draft:

  • Iowa’s Keegan Murray will turn 22 before he plays his first NBA game, but he doesn’t believe his age will discourage teams from drafting him, according to James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star. “I’d say I’m a 21-year-old in an 18-year-old’s body,” Murray said. “In high school, I was a 5-foot-10 sophomore and ended up growing to 6-foot-8 my senior year of high school. So I’m a late bloomer in that sense, so for me, I’m young. I feel young. … If you’re comparing me on age and not what I do on the court, then maybe that’s another conversation. I feel like my ceiling is as high as anyone else in the draft.”
  • Dyson Daniels is starting to get some consideration as a top-five pick after an outstanding pro day at the combine, tweets Jonathan Givony of ESPN. The Australian swingman, who played with G League Ignite this season, impressed scouts with his shooting and “immense potential,” according to Givony.
  • North Carolina guard Kerwin Walton worked out for some teams this week, but he may decide to return to college and transfer, tweets Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. Walton’s workouts included the Timberwolves and Bucks, and he has an upcoming session with the Hornets, according to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link).
  • Baylor’s Matthew Mayer plans to take his name out of the draft and transfer to another school, per Adam Zagoria of Zagsblog“I’ve decided that I’m coming back to college, but don’t know where,” he said.

Central Notes: Murray, Sharpe, Pistons, Bulls, Irving

The Pistons fell from the No. 3 slot to No. 5 in the draft lottery. If Iowa’s Keegan Murray drops to that spot, the Pistons could take him, James Edwards III of The Athletic writes. The Hawkeyes forward is a player that intrigues Detroit.

As Edwards details, Arizona swingman Bennedict Mathurin is another player that has caught the Pistons’ attention and Kentucky’s Shaedon Sharpe, who didn’t play college basketball this past season, could slot in well next to Cade Cunningham in the backcourt.

We have more from the Central Division:

  • It’s doubtful that the Pistons will trade out of the No. 5 spot, Keith Langlois of Pistons.com opines in his latest mailbag. Moving up from that spot would be costly and trading down or out of the lottery for an established player is unlikely for a team building around younger pieces. However, it’s conceivable they could add another lottery selection at No. 7 in a deal with Portland involving Jerami Grant.
  • The Bulls hold the No. 18 pick and Sam Smith of Bulls.com takes a look at five wing players that might be available at that spot, including Kansas’ Ochai Agbaji and Ohio State’s Malaki Branham.
  • Kyrie Irving admits his immaturity earlier in his career may have cost the Cavaliers additional titles, Brian Lewis of the New York Post writes. Irving made his comments on an I Am Athlete episode. “If I was in the same maturity line and understanding of who I am, and I look back, we definitely, definitely would’ve won more championships, because there would’ve been a better man-to-man understanding about what I’m going through,” he said. “I didn’t know how to share my emotions. I didn’t know how to do that. So instead of sharing, I isolated myself.”

Draft Notes: Withdrawals, Pro Days, Turell, Minott

UAB senior guard Jordan Walker, San Francisco senior guard Khalil Shabazz, and Auburn sophomore big man Johni Broome are among the players who have indicated that they’ll withdraw from the 2022 NBA draft class and return to college for at least one more year, according to a series of announcements.

None of the three were considered great bets to be drafted in 2022, so they’ll look to improve their stock in 2022/23 before potentially returning pro a year from now. Walker and Shabazz will have exhausted their NCAA eligibility at that point, while Broome – who recently announced that he’ll transfer to Auburn from Morehead State – will have the option of remaining in school.

Early entrants in this year’s draft have until the end of the day on June 1 to withdraw their names if they want to retain their NCAA eligibility. The NBA’s official withdrawal deadline is June 13.

Here’s more on the 2022 draft:

  • Earlier this week, the NBA sent teams a list of 17 Pro Days that will be run by agencies at next week’s draft combine in Chicago, per Jonathan Givony of ESPN (Twitter link). Shaedon Sharpe, Keegan Murray, Dyson Daniels, and Jeremy Sochan will be among the many prospects in attendance at those various agency-run Pro Days, Givony adds.
  • Yeshiva swingman Ryan Turell, a Division III star, has been forced to withdraw from next week’s NBA G League Elite Camp after suffering a minor injury in a workout, sources tell Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com (Twitter link).
  • Memphis wing Josh Minott has worked out for the Nets, Grizzlies, and Bucks early in the pre-draft process, a league source tells Zagoria (Twitter link).
  • Jeremy Woo of SI.com identifies five of his favorite under-the-radar prospects in the 2022 draft class, including NC State guard Terquavion Smith and UConn forward Tyrese Martin.

Full List Of 2022 NBA Draft Combine Participants

The NBA has revealed its list of 76 players who have been invited – and who are expected to attend – next week’s draft combine in Chicago. The combine workouts will take place from May 18-20.

Over the course of the week, players will conduct interviews with NBA teams, participate in five-on-five games, and go through shooting, strength and agility drills.

While several of the prominent names at the top of the draft likely won’t participate in scrimmages, those top prospects are still expected to attend. That group includes Chet Holmgren, Jabari Smith, Paolo Banchero, and Jaden Ivey.

A handful of standout players from the G League Elite Camp could be invited to participate in the combine as well.

Here’s the full list of 76 names announced by the NBA today, in alphabetical order, per Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link):

  1. Ochai Agbaji, G/F, Kansas (senior)
  2. Patrick Baldwin Jr., F, Milwaukee (freshman)
  3. Paolo Banchero, F, Duke (freshman)
  4. Dominick Barlow, F, Overtime Elite (auto-eligible)
  5. MarJon Beauchamp, G/F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  6. Hugo Besson, G, Australia (born 2001)
  7. Malaki Branham, G/F, Ohio State (freshman)
  8. Christian Braun, G, Kansas (junior)
  9. Kendall Brown, F, Baylor (freshman)
  10. John Butler Jr., F/C, Florida State (freshman)
  11. Julian Champagnie, G/F, St. John’s (junior)
  12. Kennedy Chandler, G, Tennessee (freshman)
  13. Max Christie, G, Michigan State (freshman)
  14. Kofi Cockburn, C, Illinois (junior)
  15. Dyson Daniels, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  16. Johnny Davis, G, Wisconsin (sophomore)
  17. JD Davison, G, Alabama (freshman)
  18. Moussa Diabate, F, Michigan (freshman)
  19. Ousmane Dieng, F, Australia (born 2003)
  20. Khalifa Diop, C, Spain (born 2002)
  21. Jalen Duren, C, Memphis (freshman)
  22. Tari Eason, F, LSU (sophomore)
  23. Keon Ellis, G, Alabama (senior)
  24. Michael Foster, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  25. Collin Gillespie, G, Villanova (super-senior)
  26. AJ Griffin, F, Duke (freshman)
  27. Jaden Hardy, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  28. Ron Harper Jr., F, Rutgers (senior)
  29. Chet Holmgren, C, Gonzaga (freshman)
  30. Harrison Ingram, F, Stanford (freshman)
  31. Jaden Ivey, G, Purdue (sophomore)
  32. Trayce Jackson-Davis, F, Indiana (junior)
  33. Nikola Jovic, F, Serbia (born 2003)
  34. Johnny Juzang, G, UCLA (junior)
  35. Ismael Kamagate, C, France (born 2001)
  36. Trevor Keels, G, Duke (freshman)
  37. Walker Kessler, F/C, Auburn (sophomore)
  38. Christian Koloko, C, Arizona (junior)
  39. Jake LaRavia, F, Wake Forest (junior)
  40. Justin Lewis, F, Marquette (sophomore)
  41. E.J. Liddell, F, Ohio State (junior)
  42. Bennedict Mathurin, G/F, Arizona (sophomore)
  43. Matthew Mayer, F, Baylor (senior)
  44. Bryce McGowens, G, Nebraska (freshman)
  45. Leonard Miller, F, Canada (born 2003)
  46. Josh Minott, F, Memphis (freshman)
  47. Aminu Mohammed, G/F, Georgetown (freshman)
  48. Iverson Molinar, G, Mississippi State (junior)
  49. Jean Montero, G, Overtime Elite (auto-eligible)
  50. Wendell Moore, F, Duke (junior)
  51. Keegan Murray, F, Iowa (sophomore)
  52. Andrew Nembhard, G, Gonzaga
  53. Scotty Pippen Jr., G, Vanderbilt (junior)
  54. Gabriele Procida, G/F, Italy (born 2002)
  55. Orlando Robinson, F/C, Fresno State (junior)
  56. David Roddy, F, Colorado State (junior)
  57. Ryan Rollins, G, Toledo (sophomore)
  58. Dereon Seabron, G, NC State (sophomore)
  59. Shaedon Sharpe, G, Kentucky (freshman)
  60. Jabari Smith, F, Auburn (freshman)
  61. Terquavion Smith, G, NC State (freshman)
  62. Jeremy Sochan, F, Baylor (freshman)
  63. Matteo Spagnolo, G, Italy (born 2003)
  64. Julian Strawther, G/F, Gonzaga (sophomore)
  65. Dalen Terry, G, Arizona (sophomore)
  66. Drew Timme, F, Gonzaga (junior)
  67. Jabari Walker, F, Colorado (sophomore)
  68. TyTy Washington Jr., G, Kentucky (freshman)
  69. Peyton Watson, G/F, UCLA (freshman)
  70. Blake Wesley, G, Notre Dame (freshman)
  71. Alondes Williams, G, Wake Forest (super-senior)
  72. Jalen Williams, G, Santa Clara (junior)
  73. Jaylin Williams, F/C, Arkansas (sophomore)
  74. Mark Williams, C, Duke (sophomore)
  75. Trevion Williams, F/C, Purdue (senior)
  76. Fanbo Zeng, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)

Pistons Notes: Cunningham, Draft, Free Agency

Last year’s NBA draft lottery resulted in the Pistons landing the No. 1 overall pick and selecting Cade Cunningham, and his strong rookie campaign has liberated general manager Troy Weaver to select the best player available no matter where their pick lands on May 17, argues Keith Langlois of Pistons.com.

The league has been dominated by primary play-makers with the basketball IQ, talent and skill to manipulate defenses, and Cunningham certainly fits that description. That’s why Langlois believes Weaver should be comfortable selecting whichever player he believes “has the best chance to both complement Cunningham and have his potential drawn out by Cunningham.”

The worst pick the Pistons can end up with is No. 7, but there’s a 93% chance it’ll be in the top six.

Here’s more on Detroit:

  • James L. Edwards III and Sam Vecenie of The Athletic explore several prospects the Pistons might target in the upcoming draft. If the Pistons land the No. 1 pick again, Vecenie views Jabari Smith as the top choice, with Chet Holmgren second. However, he doesn’t love the fit between Cunningham and Paolo Banchero. In the four-to-seven range, Vecenie thinks Jaden Ivey or Shaedon Sharpe, both top-tier athletes, would fit well as a second guard next to Cunningham. Both Edwards and Vecenie have heard Detroit likes Keegan Murray, but they aren’t sure exactly how much. Vecenie compares Murray’s game to Tobias Harris and Antawn Jamison, skilled forwards who are/were productive NBA players.
  • Who should the Pistons target if they fail to land one of the top 2022 free agents with their sizeable cap space? Some fallback options might include Gary Harris, Bryn Forbes, Donte DiVincenzo and T.J. Warren, Edwards writes in another story for The Athletic.
  • In the same vein, Omari Sankofa II of The Detroit Free Press details three focus areas for the team in free agency, and who they should target. Sankofa thinks Jalen Brunson is a good fit with Cunningham and Detroit has been linked to him multiple times, but the Mavs are reportedly intent on keeping him. Deandre Ayton, who’ll be a restricted free agent once Phoenix tenders him a qualifying offer, is a legitimate max player in Sankofa’s eyes, but he thinks the Suns would match any offer for him.

Draft Notes: Latest Mock, Senior Eligibility, Timme, Rollins, Williams, St. Hilaire, Sasser

Gonzaga freshman big man Chet Holmgren goes No. 1 to Houston in Jonathan Givony’s latest mock draft on ESPN. Givony projects Orlando taking Auburn freshman Jabari Smith with the second pick and Detroit selecting Duke’s Paolo Banchero in the No. 3 slot. Purdue guard Jaden Ivey and Iowa forward Keegan Murray round out the top five in the post-NCAA Tournament mock.

We have more draft-related notes:

  • As it did last year, the NBA will require fourth-year college seniors to declare themselves eligible for the draft, Givony confirms (via Twitter). Players can withdraw by June 1 in order to retain their NCAA eligibility.
  • Gonzaga junior forward Drew Timme has declared for the draft, he announced on Twitter. Timme, who is ranked No. 57 overall on ESPN’s Best Available rankings, averaged 18.4 PPG, 6.8 RPG and 2.8 APG this season for the Bulldogs. His announcement doesn’t say anything about maintaining his college eligibility, so it sounds like he’s prepared to go pro.
  • Toledo sophomore Ryan Rollins is entering the draft and will hire an agent, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets. A shooting guard, Rollins is ranked No. 70 on ESPN’s Best Available list. He averaged 18.9 PPG, 6.0 RPG and 3.6 APG this season.
  • VCU forward Vince Williams has declared for the draft, CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein tweets. Williams is ranked No. 92 on ESPN’s prospects list. He averaged 14.1 PPG, 6.0 RPG and 3.0 APG as a senior.
  • New Orleans guard Derek St. Hilaire has declared for the draft and will forgo his final year of eligibility, he revealed in a tweet. He averaged 20.1 PPG in his senior year.
  • Houston guard Marcus Sasser will test the draft waters but won’t hire an agent, Mark Berman of Fox 26 tweets. The junior averaged 17.7 PPG in 12 games for the Cougars before a toe injury sidelined him.

Draft Notes: Champagnie, Duruji, J. Smith, Banchero

Julian Champagnie of St. John’s will give up his final two years of eligibility and enter the NBA draft, writes Zach Braziller of The New York Post. Champagnie, who tested the draft waters last year before deciding to withdraw after injuring his wrist, called it “kind of a no-brainer” to try again this year.

He will retain agent Nick Blatchford of UNLTD Sports Group, who worked with him on NIL deals over the past year. Champagnie plans to head to Miami on Sunday to begin preparations for the draft. He is projected as a possible second-round pick and is listed at No. 59 on ESPN’s big board.

“I think last year was my time to be nervous,” said Champagnie, who averaged 19.2 PPG this season. “I’m happy, I’m ready for it. I came back last year and I’ve done enough. It’s my time to go. It’s an opportunity I have and an opportunity that comes once in a lifetime. It’s a matter of taking your opportunity and seeing where it gets you.”

There’s more draft news to pass along:

  • Florida’s Anthony Duruji has decided to skip his final year of eligibility and declare for the draft. In making the announcement on Twitter, Duruji stated that he will hire an agent and remain in the draft. Duruji, who averaged 8.6 points and 4.1 rebounds for the Gators, is currently a long shot to be drafted and isn’t listed on the ESPN board.
  • Auburn’s Jabari Smith has returned to the top spot in the latest mock draft by Sam Vecenie of The Athletic. Vecenie makes it clear that there’s not a consensus No. 1 choice this year, but Smith seems to carry the least risk. Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren, who was the first choice in Vecenie’s last mock, drops to No. 2 as Vecenie calls him “more polarizing” than Smith among NBA talent evaluators. Duke’s Paolo Banchero, Purdue’s Jaden Ivey and Iowa’s Keegan Murray round out the top five.
  • Banchero appears to have improved his draft stock during Duke’s NCAA Tournament run, per Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report, who looks at draft-related stories to watch during the Final Four. Scouts have been impressed by Banchero’s abilities as an isolation scorer and a playmaker, according to Wasserman. Duke’s Mark Williams and AJ Griffin and Kansas’ Ochai Agbaji are also getting plenty of attention from scouts this weekend.