Kok Yat

Central Notes: Branham, Terry, Beauchamp, Tillman, Pacers

The Cavaliers are hosting Ohio State’s Malaki Branham for a pre-draft workout on Wednesday, according to Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com. Cleveland holds the No. 14 overall pick and Branham, a shooting guard, is ranked 13th on ESPN’s Best Available list. He averaged 13.7 PPG and knocked down 41.6% of his 3-pointers in his lone college season.

We have more from the Central Division:

Central Notes: LaVine, Pacers, Pistons Lottery Pick, Bucks Offseason

What would it take for teams without cap room to ink Zach LaVine and engineer a sign-and-trade? Evan Sidery of Basketball News takes a look at several potential trades in which LaVine winds up with the Heat, Hawks or Mavericks. In the Hawks’ case, Sidery speculates that a three-way deal in which the Bulls receive Kevin Huerter and Onyeka Okongwu and the Pacers get Danilo Gallinari and a 2023 first-round pick from the Hawks might work.

We have more on the Central Division:

  • The Pacers will work out six draft prospects on Monday, Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files tweets. That group includes Teddy Allen (New Mexico State), Terrell Brown Jr. (Washington), Max Christie (Michigan State), Ryan Rollins (Toledo), Peyton Watson (UCLA) and Kok Yat (Overtime Elite).
  • Would the Pistons move off the No. 5 spot in the lottery for three first-round selections? Keith Langlois of Pistons.com believes if the Spurs offered the No. 9, 20 and 25 picks, Detroit might go along with it. The draft is deep enough that adding three first-rounders would bring more value that the No. 5 pick alone, in Langlois’ assessment.
  • The Bucks may have as many as five roster holes to fill and The Athletic’s Eric Nehm takes a comprehensive look at how they’ll approach the offseason and what kinds of free agents they might target.

44 Prospects Announced For 2022 NBA G League Elite Camp

The NBA G League has formally announced its field of 44 draft prospects for the 2022 NBA G League Elite Camp.

The event, which will take place May 16 and 17 in Chicago, “gives draft prospects an opportunity to display their skills in front of NBA and NBA G League scouts, coaches and front-office executives over the course of the camp by playing in five-on-five games and participating in strength and agility drills.”

The top performers from the camp will be invited to the NBA Draft Combine, which will take place from May 18-22 in Chicago. Some NBA players who have participated in past G League Elite Camps include Pelicans guard Jose Alvarado, Pacers forward Oshae Brissett, Clippers wing Terance Mann, and Heat wing Max Strus.

Here’s the list of 44 draft-eligible attendees:

The list of attendees features 13 players on ESPN’s big board, notes Jonathan Givony of ESPN (via Twitter), so some players have a chance to be drafted.

The top-ranked prospect at the camp is Scheierman (No. 69), who averaged 16.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.3 steals on .508/.469/.802 shooting this season for South Dakota State (35 games, 33.3 minutes per contest).

NBA Announces Initial Early Entrant List For 2022 Draft

The NBA has officially released the initial list of early entrants for the 2022 NBA draft, announcing in a press release that 283 players have filed as early entry candidates. Of those prospects, 247 are from colleges, while 36 are international early entrants.

Those are big numbers, but they fall well short of the 353 early entrants who initially declared for the draft a year ago. Beginning in 2021, the NCAA granted players an extra year of eligibility due to the coronavirus pandemic, resulting in seniors having to decide between staying at college for one more season or declaring for the draft as an “early” entrant.

That tweak to the NCAA’s eligibility rules has increased the number of total early entrants due to the influx of seniors into the pool. However, as Jonathan Givony of ESPN observes (via Twitter), the number of college non-seniors (123) on the initial early entry list this year is actually the lowest since 2016, while the number of international prospects (36) is the lowest since 2014.

This year’s total of 283 early entrants figures to shrink significantly by June 1 and again by June 13, the two deadlines for players to withdraw their names from the draft pool. But it still looks like the pool will remain extremely crowded, with the eventual number of early entrants certain to exceed 58, the number of picks in the draft.

Our tracker of early entrants for the 2022 draft is fully up to date and can be found right here.

Here are the changes we made to our tracker today:


Newly-added players:

College players:

These players either didn’t publicly announce that they were entering the draft or we simply missed it when they did.

International players:

These players weren’t previously mentioned on our list of international early entrants. The country listed here indicates where they last played, not necessarily where they were born.

Other notable draft-eligible early entrants:

The NBA sent its teams a list of 33 “also-eligible” names. That list isn’t public, but Jonathan Givony of ESPN (Twitter link) shared some of the most notable players on it, and we’ve added them to our early entrant tracker. They are as follows:

  1. Dominick Barlow, F, Overtime Elite
  2. MarJon Beauchamp, G/F, G League Ignite
  3. Dyson Daniels, G, G League Ignite
  4. Henri Drell, G/F, Windy City Bulls
  5. Michael Foster, F, G League Ignite
  6. Jaden Hardy, G, G League Ignite
  7. Makur Maker, C, Sydney Kings (formerly Howard Bison)
  8. Jean Montero, G, Overtime Elite
  9. Samson Ruzhentsev, G/F, Mega Basket (formerly Florida Gators)
  10. Kai Sotto, C, Adelaide 36ers (formerly G League Ignite)
  11. Zaire Wade, G, Salt Lake City Stars
  12. Kok Yat, F, Overtime Elite
  13. Fanbo Zeng, F, G League Ignite

Players removed:

Despite reports or announcements that the players below would declare for the draft, they didn’t show up on the NBA’s official list.

That could mean a number of things — they may have decided against entering the draft; they may have entered the draft, then withdrawn; they may have had no NCAA eligibility remaining, making them automatically draft-eligible; they may have incorrectly filed their paperwork; or the NBA may have accidentally omitted some names.

In any case, we’ve removed the following names from our early entrant list, at least for the time being.

Finally, Givony reports (via Twitter) that Canadian forward Leonard Miller, from the Fort Erie International Academy has been asked to fill out additional paperwork to finalize his entrance into the draft pool. According to Givony, there’s an expectation that Miller will be added to the list, so we’ve left him listed in our early entrant tracker among the international players.

And-Ones: M. Gasol, Leunen, B. Ferry, Overtime Elite

After big man Ekpe Udoh suffered a serious knee injury last month, Virtus Bologna head coach Sergio Scariolo reached out to Marc Gasol to gauge his interest in joining the Italian club, Scariolo confirmed this week on Italian Twitch channel Area 52 (video link). As Marc Stein of Substack relays (via Twitter), Scariolo said Gasol turned him down in an “elegant way.”

Scariolo coached Gasol on the Spanish national team and as an assistant in Toronto, so he has an existing relationship with the veteran center. However, Gasol – who was traded to Memphis and then waived in September – appears content to spend time with his family in Spain rather than joining another NBA or EuroLeague team anytime soon. There were rumors last month that Gasol would be playing for Girona, the Spanish club he owns, but that hasn’t come to fruition yet.

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

  • Former Oregon forward Maarty Leunen, who spent the last 13 seasons playing overseas in various European leagues, has announced his retirement, as Emiliano Carchia of Sportando relays. Leunen was the 54th overall pick in the 2008 NBA draft and has had his rights traded four times since then – most recently to the Pacers in 2019 – but never signed an NBA contract.
  • Former Washington Bullets general manager Bob Ferry, who ran the front office from 1973 to 1990, died at age 84 on Wednesday, per ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. The father of Danny Ferry, Bob Ferry won two Executive of the Year awards and helped Washington win the only title in franchise history in 1978.
  • Jeremy Woo of SI.com shares his impressions of the Overtime Elite’s Pro Day, including his thoughts on the program’s three most notable 2022 draft-eligible players: guard Jean Montero, wing Kok Yat, and forward Dominick Barlow.

And-Ones: O’Quinn, Stone, Overtime Elite, 2022 Draft

Veteran NBA big man Kyle O’Quinn will continue his career in France, having signed a contract with Paris Basketball, according to the team (Twitter link).

An eight-year NBA veteran, O’Quinn began his career in 2012 after being selected 49th overall by Orlando. In 472 career regular season NBA contests for the Magic, Knicks, Pacers, and Sixers, O’Quinn averaged 5.4 PPG, 4.6 RPG, and 1.0 BPG in 14.2 minutes per contest. He signed with Turkish team Fenerbahçe for the 2020/21 season and will now return to Europe for at least one more year.

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

  • Free agent big man Diamond Stone has agreed to sign with the Taiwan Beer of the Super Basketball League, sources tell our JD Shaw (Twitter link). Stone, 24, was the 40th overall pick in the 2016 draft, but appeared in just seven games for the Clippers. He spent several seasons in the G League and played in Puerto Rico earlier this year.
  • The Overtime Elite league for top high school prospects continues to fill out its ranks for its inaugural season. OTE announced the additions of Malik Bowman, Devontes Cobbs, and Kok Yat earlier this week, then finalized deals with Bryson Warren and Dominick Barlow today, as ESPN’s Jonathan Givony writes. Warren, a five-star recruit, ranked No. 14 in ESPN’s list of class of 2023 recruits.
  • Jeremy Woo of SI.com has unveiled his early big board for the 2022 NBA draft, headed by the usual suspects, including Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren, and Jaden Hardy.
  • A handful of ESPN writers identified some under-the-radar concerns for some of the NBA’s best teams. The Suns‘ ability to repeat last season’s good health luck and Anthony Davis‘ willingness to play big minutes at center are among the topics highlighted by ESPN’s panel.