Payton Pritchard

Draft Decisions: Roby, Lecque, Powell, Montgomery

We’re continuing to track players making draft decisions before tonight’s 11:59 pm EST deadline. Below are some of the latest decisions:

Staying in the draft:

  • Nebraska forward Isaiah Roby has announced his intention to keep his name in the 2019 NBA Draft, tweets Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports. Roby, 21, comes it at No. 39 in ESPN’s top-100 list.
  • Jalen Lecque has announced through his own Twitter account that he too will forgo a college scholarship opportunity and remain in the NBA Draft. The 18-year-old is ranked No. 51 in ESPN’s top-100.
  • Arizona guard Brandon Randolph will also remain in the NBA Draft, per Jeff Goodman of Stadium, despite not being ranked in the top-100 of ESPN’s prospect list.
  • Creighton big man Martin Krampelj will also remain in the draft and forgo his senior season, according to Jonathan Givony of ESPN. Krampelj is likewise not a top-100 prospect per ESPN.

Withdrawing from the draft:

Be sure to check our early entrants list for a full list of all draft decisions.

Draft Workouts: Pistons, Sixers, Wolves, Kings

Centers Bruno Fernando (Maryland) and Daniel Gafford (Arkansas) were among the prospects the Pistons brought in on Tuesday, Rod Beard of the Detroit News tweets. Fernando is ranked the fifth-best center prospect by ESPN’s Jonathan Givony and No. 34 overall. Gafford is right behind him among centers and No. 38 overall. Detroit currently holds the No. 15 and No. 45 picks. Shooting guards Fletcher Magee (Wofford), SG Jaylin Walker (Kent State) and Ky Bowman (Boston College) and wing Cody Martin (Nevada) also visited the Pistons’ practice facility on Tuesday.

We have more draft workout info:

Draft Notes: C. White, Barrett, Culver, G. Williams

A number of draft-eligible prospects who attended this week’s combine decided against participating in today’s scrimmages, with at least one prospect leaving the event altogether.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported (via Twitter) that Jalen Lecque, who performed well during Thursday’s scrimmages, decided not to play anymore based on feedback to his family. Croatian forward Luka Samanic followed suit, as did Charles Bassey (Western Kentucky), Moses Brown (UCLA), and DaQuan Jeffries (Tulsa), according to Jeremy Woo of SI.com (via Twitter), who adds that Brown is believed to have suffered an injury on Thursday.

Meanwhile, projected lottery pick Coby White (UNC) left the combine on Friday after interviewing with several teams, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). White’s departure will likely fuel speculation of a draft promise, and while it’s a possibility, there have been no reports yet suggesting that’s the case.

Here’s more on the draft:

Northwest Notes: Westbrook, Barton, Rubio, Jazz Workouts

Russell Westbrook dealt with significant pain in his left hand for approximately six weeks before the Thunder were eliminated from the postseason, Brett Dawson of The Athletic reports.

Westbrook, who shot 36% from the field during the opening round, and fellow Thunder All-Star Paul George underwent surgical procedures this week. Westbrook had a ligament repaired in his left hand as well as arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. George had a tendon repaired in his right shoulder and will soon undergo surgery to address a small labrum tear in his left shoulder.

It’s difficult to know how the injuries might impact the Thunder next season, though Westbrook should be ready in plenty of time for training camp, Dawson continues. Expected roster changes over the next four months will have a bigger impact, Dawson adds.

We have more from the Northwest Division:

  • The Trail Blazers traded Will Barton to the Nuggets four years ago but Barton downplays the significance of trying to eliminate his former team, according to Joe Vardon of The Athletic. Barton is averaging 9.2 PPG and 4.9 RPG this postseason. “I’m past that. That was a long time ago in my career,” Barton said. “They just happen to be the opponent that we’re playing against and I just want to beat them, not because I used to play with them, just because they’re in our way for trying to advance. That’s the only thing I’m thinking about. I can’t try to make it personal or anything like that.”
  • The Pacers, Bulls and Suns are the most likely landing spots for Ricky Rubio if he doesn’t remain with the Jazz, Frank Urbina of Hoops Hype opines. Rubio could come at a lower cost than other point guard options for Indiana, while he could give Chicago and Phoenix a veteran presence while also grooming a younger player at the position, Urbina adds. Rubio will be an unrestricted free agent after making nearly $15MM this season.
  • The Jazz brought in six draft prospects on Wednesday, according to a tweet from the team’s media relations department. Power forwards Mamadi Diakite (Virginia) and Dewan Hernandez (Miami, Fla.), wings Tyus Battle (Syracuse) and Brandon Randolph (Arizona) and guards Matt Mooney (Texas Tech) and T.J. Gibbs (Notre Dame) were the visitors. Big men Neemias Queta (Utah State), Zylan Cheatham (Arizona State), Silvio De Sousa (Kansas) and Australian Harry Froling and guards Payton Pritchard (Oregon) and Devon Dotson (Kansas) are coming in on Saturday, according to another Jazz tweet.

Draft Notes: Zoosman, Pritchard, Stevens, More

Israeli wing Yovel Zoosman has submitted paperwork to the NBA to make himself eligible for the 2019 NBA draft, reports ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. The 20-year-old, who is currently playing for Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Israeli League and the Euroleague, is aiming to become the first player from Israel to be drafted in 10 years — Omri Casspi was selected in the 2009 draft.

“If I were fortunate enough to be drafted this coming June, it would mean the world to me to follow in the footsteps of Omri Casspi, Gal Mekel, and others, make my country proud and hopefully inspire young Israelis to follow their dreams as well,” Zossman told Givony.

The No. 58 prospect on ESPN’s big board, Zoosman is a top candidate to win this year’s EuroLeague Rising Star award, according to Givony, who notes that NBA scouts like the youngster’s size, length, shooting ability and basketball IQ.

Here are more draft-related updates on 2019’s early entrants:

  • Penn State junior forward Lamar Stevens announced on Tuesday that he’ll test the draft waters (Twitter link). “I think it’s a win-win,” Stevens said of going through the pre-draft process while retaining his college eligibility. “One way, I get to go and play professionally. (Or) I come back to a great school and really get to end my legacy how I really envision.”
  • Oregon junior guard Payton Pritchard tells James Crepea of The Oregonian that he’ll enter the draft while maintaining his NCAA eligibility. Pritchard came on strong in March, averaging 16.0 PPG, 6.3 APG, and 5.3 RPG during the Ducks’ Sweet 16 run.
  • Georgia State junior guard D’Marcus Simonds announced on Twitter that he’s entering the draft and signing with an agent. While Simonds can test the waters even after hiring representation, his announcement doesn’t make it sounds as if he expects to return for his senior season.
  • California Baptist sophomore guard Milan Acquaah is entering the draft without hiring an agent, the school announced in a press release. Acquaah averaged 19.0 PPG, 5.0 RPG, and 3.4 APG in 31 games in 2018/19.
  • Howard junior guard Charles Williams Jr. will join teammate R.J. Cole in testing the 2019 draft waters, a source tells Steven J. Gaither of HBCU Gameday. Williams averaged 17.9 PPG on .446/.373/.856 shooting in 33 games in 2018/19.