Zane Martin

Draft Updates: M. Robinson, Hutchison, Edwards, More

Two notable prospects have withdrawn from this week’s NBA draft combine, according to reports. Jonathan Givony of ESPN.com tweets that Mitchell Robinson won’t participate in the event, while Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com tweets that Boise State’s Chandler Hutchison has also withdrawn. In each case, it’s not clear if the player has received a promise from a team or if there’s another reason for his decision.

While NBA evaluators have four years of film on Hutchison to watch, Robinson remains one of the mystery men of this year’s draft class. Due to eligibility issues, he didn’t play a single minute of college basketball, so his draft stock remains cloudy.

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

  • Purdue guard Carsen Edwards was spotted at the combine, so it appears he received a last-minute invite due to the late withdrawals, tweets Givony.
  • Following the official NBA combine this week, another event called the Pro Basketball Combine will take place next week. The Pro Basketball Combine released its full list of participants today, with Deng Adel, Maverick Rowan, and LiAngelo Ball among the names on that list.
  • A handful of early entrants have withdrawn – or will withdraw – from the draft to return to school next season, according to Jeff Goodman of ESPN (Twitter link). Those players include Malik Hines (UMass), Kalob Ledoux (McNeese State), Malik Martin (South Florida) and Zane Martin (Towson), with Ledoux and Malik Martin expected to transfer.
  • A ton of meetings will take place at the combine this week, so it’s likely not worth reading too much into each one, but here are a few early updates: The Pistons are meeting with Kansas guard Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk (Twitter link via Vince Ellis of The Detroit Press), the Bucks are interviewing Texas Tech’s Zhaire Smith (Twitter link via Gery Woelfel of The Racine Journal Times), the Timberwolves are interviewing Anfernee Simons (Twitter link via Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News), and the Knicks are meeting with Trae Young (link via Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News).

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 247Sports.com (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).