Hurt was the conference’s leading scorer last season, averaging 18.3 PPG and 6.2 RPG for the Blue Devils in 24 games as a sophomore. The 6’9” Hurt shot 44.4% from 3-point range, making him an attractive free agent after the draft.
Both players were considered potential second-round picks, ranking 59th and 63rd respectively on ESPN’s big board of 2021 prospects. However, Givony notes that Hukporti – like a number of international players who withdrew before today’s deadline – wasn’t interested in being a draft-and-stash prospect. It’s unclear if Badji felt the same way, but both players will be looking to boost their stock ahead of the 2022 draft.
Another potential second-round pick, Senegalese big man Amar Sylla, will be keeping his name in the draft, Givony tweets. The 19-year-old, who ranks 81st on ESPN’s board, is a strong draft-and-stash candidate, Givony adds.
Here’s more on the 2021 draft:
- Belgian wing Vrenz Bleijenbergh, another one of the international prospects keeping his name in the draft, indicated (via Twitter) that he completed a workout with the Mavericks and has a meeting with the Raptors up next.
- Turkish League MVP Alperen Sengun, who visited the Kings over the weekend, had a workout this morning with the Spurs and is on his way to meet with the Magic, reports Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee (Twitter link). Sengun could be a lottery pick next Thursday.
- Duke forward Matthew Hurt worked out for the Sixers today and has the Clippers, Nets, and Magic on tap later this week, according to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link), who adds that Hurt also recently impressed in workouts with the Rockets and Bucks.
- Oklahoma guard Austin Reaves is keeping busy during the pre-draft process — Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer tweets that Reaves is working out for a total of 18 NBA teams, including the Hawks, Knicks, Sixers, Nets, and Hornets.
The Timberwolves and Jazz are hosting pre-draft group workouts in Minneapolis from July 8-11, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). According to Wojnarowski, the event will be open to all 30 NBA teams and the goal will be to have 48 prospects participate over that four-day period.
In past years when teams have brought in groups of prospects for pre-draft workouts, they’ve typically hosted six players at a time. If the event in Minneapolis follows a similar pattern, it could showcase two groups of six players apiece on each day from July 8-11.
Here’s more on the upcoming draft:
- Virginia Tech forward Keve Aluma is returning to school for another year, he announced on Twitter. Aluma had been testing the draft waters after 15.2 PPG and 7.9 RPG in 22 games (30.6 MPG) as a junior in 2020/21.
- Purdue forward Trevion Williams is also pulling out of the draft and heading back to school, per a Twitter announcement. Williams put up 15.5 PPG and 9.1 RPG in 28 games (25.1 MPG) for the Boilemakers as a junior this year, earning All-Big Ten honors.
- Duke forward Matthew Hurt has workouts on tap with the Celtics, Thunder, Pelicans, Lakers, Clippers, and Bucks, according to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link).
- West Virginia guard Miles McBride has worked out for the Knicks and Celtics in addition to interviewing with several teams, tweets Alder Almo of Empire Sports Media.
The NBA has revealed via press release its list of 69 players who have been invited to next week’s draft combine in Chicago and who are expected to attend. The combine will take place from June 21-17.
While several of the prominent names at the top of the draft will opt to skip the event – most notably, presumed number one pick Cade Cunningham and Gonzaga’s Jalen Suggs – there are several high-profile prospects set to attend. Evan Mobley, widely considered a likely choice for the No. 2 pick as well as potential top-five picks Jonathan Kuminga and Jalen Green headline the class of participants this year, along with potential lottery picks Moses Moody, Corey Kispert and Scottie Barnes.
According to the press release, players will conduct interviews with NBA teams, participate in five-on-five games, and go through shooting, strength and agility drills throughout the week-long event. It’s likely that the more high-profile names will focus more on the interviews than the drills.
The press release also confirms that a select number of standout players from the G League Elite Camp will be invited to participate in the Combine as well.
Here’s the full list of 69 names announced by the NBA today, in alphabetical order:
- Max Abmas, G, Oral Roberts (sophomore)
- Ochai Agbaji, G, Kansas (junior)
- Marcus Bagley, F, Arizona State (freshman)
- Scottie Barnes, F, Florida State (freshman)
- Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky (junior)
- Brandon Boston Jr., G/F, Kentucky (freshman)
- James Bouknight, G, UConn (sophomore)
- Greg Brown, F, Texas (freshman)
- Jared Butler, G, Baylor (junior)
- Julian Champagnie, G/F, St. John’s (sophomore)
- Justin Champagnie, G/F, Pittsburgh (sophomore)
- Josh Christopher, G, Arizona State (freshman)
- Sharife Cooper, G, Auburn (freshman)
- Ayo Dosunmu, G, Illinois (junior)
- David Duke, G, Providence (junior)
- Kessler Edwards, F, Pepperdine (junior)
- Luka Garza, C, Iowa (senior)
- RaiQuan Gray, F, Florida State (junior)
- Jalen Green, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
- Quentin Grimes, G, Houston (junior)
- Sam Hauser, F, Virginia (senior)
- Aaron Henry, G/F, Michigan State (junior)
- Ariel Hukporti, C, Lithuania (born 2002)
- Matthew Hurt, F, Duke (sophomore)
- Nah’Shon Hyland, G, VCU (sophomore)
- Isaiah Jackson, F, Kentucky (freshman)
- David Johnson, G, Louisville (sophomore)
- Jalen Johnson, F, Duke (freshman)
- Keon Johnson, G, Tennessee (freshman)
- Herb Jones, F, Alabama (senior)
- Kai Jones, F, Texas (sophomore)
- Johnny Juzang, G/F, UCLA (sophomore)
- Corey Kispert, F, Gonzaga (senior)
- Jonathan Kuminga, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
- Scottie Lewis, G, Florida (sophomore)
- Isaiah Livers, F, Michigan (senior)
- Makur Maker, C, Howard (freshman)
- Sandro Mamukelashvili, F/C, Seton Hall (senior)
- Tre Mann, G, Florida (sophomore)
- Matthew Mayer, G/F, Baylor (junior)
- Miles McBride, G, West Virginia (sophomore)
- Davion Mitchell, G, Baylor (junior)
- Evan Mobley, F/C, USC (freshman)
- Isaiah Mobley, F, USC (sophomore)
- Moses Moody, G, Arkansas (freshman)
- Trey Murphy III, G, Virginia (junior)
- Daishen Nix, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
- John Petty Jr., G, Alabama (senior)
- Yves Pons, G/F, Tennessee (senior)
- Jason Preston, G, Ohio (junior)
- Joshua Primo, G, Alabama (freshman)
- Roko Prkacin, F, Croatia (born 2002)
- Neemias Queta, C, Utah State (junior)
- Austin Reaves, G, Oklahoma (senior)
- Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, F, Villanova (sophomore)
- Terrence Shannon Jr., G/F, Texas Tech (sophomore)
- Day’Ron Sharpe, F/C, North Carolina (freshman)
- Jericho Sims, F/C, Texas (senior)
- Jaden Springer, G, Tennessee (freshman)
- DJ Steward, G, Duke (freshman)
- Cameron Thomas, G, LSU (freshman)
- JT Thor, F, Auburn (freshman)
- Isaiah Todd, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
- Trendon Watford, F, LSU (sophomore)
- Joe Wieskamp, G/F, Iowa (junior)
- Ziaire Williams, F, Stanford (freshman)
- McKinley Wright IV, G, Colorado (senior)
- Moses Wright, F, Georgia Tech (senior)
- Marcus Zegarowski, G, Creighton (junior)
Although the Blue Devils didn’t have a great season, missing out on a spot in the NCAA tournament, Hurt was a bright spot. He averaged 18.3 points and 6.1 rebounds in 24 games (32.7 MPG), posting an impressive shooting line of .556/.444/.724.
Hurt’s performance earned him a spot on the All-ACC First Team, as well as the conference’s Most Improved Player award. He’s the No. 48 prospect on ESPN’s big board, making him a realistic candidate to be drafted in July.
Several more prospects who are part of ESPN’s top-100 list have also announced that they’re entering the draft. Here’s the latest:
- Matthew Mayer, G/F, Baylor (junior): On the heels of winning national title, Mayer announced on Instagram that he’ll enter the draft while maintaining his NCAA eligibility. The No. 53 prospect on ESPN’s board came off the bench again for the Bears in 2020/21, averaging 8.1 PPG with a .395 3PT%.
- Santi Aldama, F, Loyola Maryland (sophomore): Aldama averaged a double-double (21.2 PPG, 10.1 RPG) with a .513/.368/.686 shooting line in 17 games (35.0 MPG) as a sophomore, earning All-Patriot League First Team honors. The No. 57 prospect on ESPN’s board, Aldama told Jonathan Givony that he’s testing the draft waters.
- David Johnson, G, Louisville (sophomore): Johnson, the No. 67 prospect on ESPN’s list, announced on Twitter that he’ll be forgoing his remaining college eligibility and going pro. He enters the draft after a sophomore season in which he averaged 12.6 PPG, 5.8 RPG, and 3.2 APG in 19 games (35.1 MPG).
- Isaiah Wong, G, Miami (sophomore): Wong announced on Twitter that he intends to test the draft waters, leaving the door open to return to the Hurricanes. The 6’3″ guard averaged 17.1 PPG in 27 games (35.5 MPG) in 2020/21, earning himself a spot on the All-ACC Third Team.