Esa Ahmad

Draft Updates: London, Dixson, Magee, Ahmad

A pair of early entrants who declared for the 2018 NBA draft without hiring agents will keep their names in this year’s pool and go pro, according to reports.

Chattanooga’s Makinde London, who began his college career at Xavier, has signed with an agent, a source tells Jeff Goodman of ESPN (Twitter link). London, who didn’t receive an invite to the NBA draft combine, is coming off a junior year in which he averaged 13.6 PPG, 6.8 RPG, and 1.8 APG.

Meanwhile,  Jon Rothstein of FanRag Sports reports (via Twitter) that UIC sophomore forward Dikembe Dixson will also be staying in the draft rather than returning to college. That news doesn’t come as a surprise, since Dixson’s initial announcement – in which he talked about wanting to eventually return to UIC to graduate – strongly suggested that he would go pro, forgoing his remaining NCAA eligibility.

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

  • Southern Miss guard Dominic Magee will return to the program for his senior year after testing the draft waters, a source tells Rothstein (Twitter link). Magee averaged 11.7 PPG and 6.6 RPG in 2017/18 for the Golden Eagles.
  • West Virginia junior forward Esa Ahmad, who announced in early April that he would test the draft waters without an agent, is expected to withdraw his name from the 2018 draft pool, reports Goodman (via Twitter). Ahmad’s WVU teammate Sagaba Konate is also going through the draft process –both players will have to formally decide by May 30 whether to stay in the draft or return to school.
  • Junior center Malik Martin won’t be returning to South Florida for his senior year, tweets Rothstein. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean Martin will go pro. According to Rothstein, there’s also a chance that the big man will graduate and transfer.

Draft Updates: Ahmad, Reed, Martin, Weatherspoon

West Virginia junior forward Esa Ahmad will enter his name in the 2018 NBA draft pool, but won’t hire an agent, the program announced today in a press release. Ahmad is the second West Virginia underclassmen to decide to test the waters this spring, joining sophomore forward Sagaba Konate.

“Just like Sags, Esa will go through the NBA Draft procedures in a systematic and professional manner by exploring the situation. Numerous college basketball players are testing the waters, gaining valuable feedback and leaving open their option to return to school,” head coach Bob Huggins said in a statement.

Ahmad averaged a respectable 10.2 PPG and 5.5 RPG for the Mountaineers in 2017/18, but neither he nor Konate are viewed as elite prospects. The only West Virginia prospect on Jonathan Givony’s big board at ESPN is senior Jevon Carter, who comes in at No. 44.

Here are more updates on early entrants for the 2018 NBA draft:

  • Junior center Trayvon Reed is declaring for the draft without hiring an agent, per Texas Southern head coach Mike Davis (Twitter link via Mark Berman of FOX 26 Houston). A 7’2″ rim protector who averaged 3.1 BPG in 2017/18, Reed will have the option of withdrawing by May 30 and returning to school for his senior year.
  • After a breakout sophomore season in which he averaged 19.8 PPG, Towson guard Zane Martin announced that he’ll enter the 2018 draft without an agent. “This is a chance for Zane to get feedback from NBA teams and will allow him to gather as much information as possible about the entire process and his future prospects that will help him make a decision that’s best for him and his future aspirations,” head coach Pat Skerry said.
  • Mississippi State guard Nick Weatherspoon is testing the draft waters, he tells Evan Daniels of (Twitter link). Weatherspoon posted 10.8 PPG, 2.9 RPG, and 2.1 APG during his freshman season with the Bulldogs.
  • Two Wake Forest juniors, guard Bryant Crawford and center Doral Moore, are testing the draft waters without representation, the program recently announced (Twitter link). Crawford posted 16.9 PPG and 4.9 APG in 2017/18, while Moore nearly averaged a double-double (11.1 PPG, 9.4 RPG).