RaiQuan Gray

Checking In On Unsigned 2021 NBA Draft Picks

When Usman Garuba officially signed his rookie contract with Houston earlier this week, he became the 30th and final first-round pick from the 2021 draft to sign his first NBA deal. There will be no draft-and-stash players among this year’s first-rounders — they’re all now officially on NBA rosters.

As our tracker shows, another 23 second-rounders from this year’s draft class have also signed their first NBA contracts or – in Joe Wieskamp‘s case – agreed to a deal that should be officially completed soon.

That leaves just seven prospects from 2021’s 60-player draft class who have yet to be signed. They are as follows:

  1. New York Knicks: Rokas Jokubaitis, G, Lithuania
  2. Boston Celtics: Juhann Begarin, G, France
  3. Brooklyn Nets: Marcus Zegarowski, G, Creighton
  4. Philadelphia 76ers: Filip Petrusev, F, Serbia
  5. Philadelphia 76ers: Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky
  6. Detroit Pistons: Balsa Koprivica, C, Florida State
  7. Brooklyn Nets: RaiQuan Gray, F, Florida State

Of these seven players, at least three appear on track to spend the 2021/22 season in Europe. Jokubaitis returned to his team in Barcelona following his Summer League stint with the Knicks, while Petrusev signed with Turkish team Anadolu Efes after playing for the Sixers in Summer League. Begarin, who also played in Summer League for the Celtics, will likely end up heading back overseas to France

That leaves just four true unsigned second-round picks, including a pair of Nets. It will be interesting to see what Brooklyn’s plans are for Zegarowski and Gray. The team currently has 13 players on guaranteed contracts and one on a two-way deal, so there could conceivably be room for Zegarowski on the 15-man squad, with Gray getting the other two-way deal.

However, DeAndre’ Bembry has a partially guaranteed contract and looks like a good bet to make the Nets’ regular-season roster, and Reggie Perry (free agent) and David Duke (Exhibit 10) are among the other candidates to get a two-way deal from the team. It’s also not clear if Brooklyn intends to carry a full 15-man roster to start the season, since leaving a roster spot open would create major tax savings for the franchise.

I could envision a scenario in which Zegarowski signs a two-way contract and Gray signs a G League deal to play for the Long Island Nets, but that’s just my speculation. There are still a number of ways the Nets could go.

Meanwhile, prospects drafted in the 50s like Bassey (No. 53) and Koprivica (No. 57) are generally good candidates for two-way deals, but the Sixers and Pistons have recently filled both of their two-way openings. Perhaps Philadelphia envisions Bassey taking Anthony Tolliver‘s spot on the 15-man roster, since Tolliver is on a non-guaranteed contract.

It’ll be trickier for Detroit to find a roster spot for Koprivica. The Pistons already have 15 players on guaranteed contracts and still may re-sign restricted free agent Hamidou Diallo. Stashing Koprivica overseas or in the G League could be the plan. Koprivica was born and raised in Serbia, so he might be more comfortable spending a season overseas than a typical NCAA draftee would be.

Full List Of 2021 NBA Draft Combine Participants

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:

  1. Max Abmas, G, Oral Roberts (sophomore)
  2. Ochai Agbaji, G, Kansas (junior)
  3. Marcus Bagley, F, Arizona State (freshman)
  4. Scottie Barnes, F, Florida State (freshman)
  5. Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky (junior)
  6. Brandon Boston Jr., G/F, Kentucky (freshman)
  7. James Bouknight, G, UConn (sophomore)
  8. Greg Brown, F, Texas (freshman)
  9. Jared Butler, G, Baylor (junior)
  10. Julian Champagnie, G/F, St. John’s (sophomore)
  11. Justin Champagnie, G/F, Pittsburgh (sophomore)
  12. Josh Christopher, G, Arizona State (freshman)
  13. Sharife Cooper, G, Auburn (freshman)
  14. Ayo Dosunmu, G, Illinois (junior)
  15. David Duke, G, Providence (junior)
  16. Kessler Edwards, F, Pepperdine (junior)
  17. Luka Garza, C, Iowa (senior)
  18. RaiQuan Gray, F, Florida State (junior)
  19. Jalen Green, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  20. Quentin Grimes, G, Houston (junior)
  21. Sam Hauser, F, Virginia (senior)
  22. Aaron Henry, G/F, Michigan State (junior)
  23. Ariel Hukporti, C, Lithuania (born 2002)
  24. Matthew Hurt, F, Duke (sophomore)
  25. Nah’Shon Hyland, G, VCU (sophomore)
  26. Isaiah Jackson, F, Kentucky (freshman)
  27. David Johnson, G, Louisville (sophomore)
  28. Jalen Johnson, F, Duke (freshman)
  29. Keon Johnson, G, Tennessee (freshman)
  30. Herb Jones, F, Alabama (senior)
  31. Kai Jones, F, Texas (sophomore)
  32. Johnny Juzang, G/F, UCLA (sophomore)
  33. Corey Kispert, F, Gonzaga (senior)
  34. Jonathan Kuminga, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  35. Scottie Lewis, G, Florida (sophomore)
  36. Isaiah Livers, F, Michigan (senior)
  37. Makur Maker, C, Howard (freshman)
  38. Sandro Mamukelashvili, F/C, Seton Hall (senior)
  39. Tre Mann, G, Florida (sophomore)
  40. Matthew Mayer, G/F, Baylor (junior)
  41. Miles McBride, G, West Virginia (sophomore)
  42. Davion Mitchell, G, Baylor (junior)
  43. Evan Mobley, F/C, USC (freshman)
  44. Isaiah Mobley, F, USC (sophomore)
  45. Moses Moody, G, Arkansas (freshman)
  46. Trey Murphy III, G, Virginia (junior)
  47. Daishen Nix, G, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  48. John Petty Jr., G, Alabama (senior)
  49. Yves Pons, G/F, Tennessee (senior)
  50. Jason Preston, G, Ohio (junior)
  51. Joshua Primo, G, Alabama (freshman)
  52. Roko Prkacin, F, Croatia (born 2002)
  53. Neemias Queta, C, Utah State (junior)
  54. Austin Reaves, G, Oklahoma (senior)
  55. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, F, Villanova (sophomore)
  56. Terrence Shannon Jr., G/F, Texas Tech (sophomore)
  57. Day’Ron Sharpe, F/C, North Carolina (freshman)
  58. Jericho Sims, F/C, Texas (senior)
  59. Jaden Springer, G, Tennessee (freshman)
  60. DJ Steward, G, Duke (freshman)
  61. Cameron Thomas, G, LSU (freshman)
  62. JT Thor, F, Auburn (freshman)
  63. Isaiah Todd, F, G League Ignite (auto-eligible)
  64. Trendon Watford, F, LSU (sophomore)
  65. Joe Wieskamp, G/F, Iowa (junior)
  66. Ziaire Williams, F, Stanford (freshman)
  67. McKinley Wright IV, G, Colorado (senior)
  68. Moses Wright, F, Georgia Tech (senior)
  69. Marcus Zegarowski, G, Creighton (junior)

Draft Notes: Edwards, Alatishe, Cunningham, Mobley, More

Pepperdine junior forward Kessler Edwards has decided to enter his name into the 2021 NBA draft pool, he tells Jonathan Givony of ESPN. While Edwards is maintaining his college eligibility for now, he expects to ultimately keep his name in the draft.

“I don’t think there’s a number in particular that I need to stay in the draft,” he told ESPN. “I’m hoping to receive interest from multiple teams and assurances that I would getting a solid deal and not end up being a free agent that no one picks up. I’m planning on going pro, going through this thing. I feel like most of these teams haven’t seen me in person and the work I’m doing getting ready in terms of my body, measurements and how I play on the court.”

Edwards, who is the No. 48 overall prospect on ESPN’s big board, has an intriguing combination of size, defensive versatility, and outside shooting that appeals to NBA teams, says Givony. In 27 games (33.9 MPG) in 2020/21, Edwards averaged 17.2 PPG and 6.8 RPG on .491/.378/.876 shooting.

Let’s round up a few more draft-related items…

  • Oregon State junior forward Warith Alatishe has decided to test the draft waters, a source tells Givony (Twitter link). The MVP of this year’s Pac-12 tournament, Alatishe averaged 9.5 PPG and 8.6 RPG in 33 games (27.4 MPG) for the Beavers in 2020/21.
  • Even though Evan Mobley and Jalen Suggs had more memorable runs in the NCAA tournament, scouts and evaluators still widely view Cade Cunningham as this year’s probable No. 1 pick, writes Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report. Mobley, Suggs, and Jalen Green are very likely to be the next three players off the board, though there’s still no consensus on the order, according to Wasserman, who says Mobley may have the slight edge at No. 2.
  • Within the same story, Wasserman examines the mixed opinions that evaluators have about a handful of draft prospects, including Davion Mitchell, Josh Christopher, and Cameron Thomas. He also suggests that Florida State forward RaiQuan Gray is a potential riser to watch during the pre-draft process, adding that Gray looks like a top-40 pick.

Marcus Bagley Among Prospects Entering 2021 Draft

Arizona State forward Marcus Bagley has decided to declare for the 2021 NBA draft while maintaining his college eligibility, he tells ESPN’s Jonathan Givony.

Bagley, the younger brother of Kings big man Marvin Bagley III, currently ranks 27th overall on ESPN’s big board of 2021 prospects. He missed a portion of his freshman season due to COVID-related interruptions and ankle and calf injuries, but showed enough in 12 games to make him a potential first-round pick.

The 19-year-old averaged 10.8 PPG and 6.2 RPG while shooting 34.7% from beyond the arc in 29.2 minutes per contest during his first – and possibly only – college season.

Bagley is one of many early entrants who has declared for the draft in recent days. Here are some others:

Expected to go pro:

Testing the draft waters: