2010 NBA Draft Early Entries


By: David Kay

The 2010 NBA Draft class is starting to sort itself out with players announcing their intentions of either declaring for the draft or returning to college.  Players have until April 25th to put their name in the draft and for those not signing an agent and possibly returning to school, May 8th is the deadline to make that decision.  Here is a list of players who have put their names into the draft.  Click on the player’s name for a complete scouting report.  Click here for David’s 2010 NBA Mock Draft.

Al-Farouq Aminu, SF, Wake Forest, Soph.
Aminu likely would have been a lottery pick last season and assured that high ranking by returning to Wake this season.  I would have been shocked if he would have returned to school as he pretty much a top-ten lock.

Cole Aldrich
, C, Kansas, Jr.

He figures to be a lottery pick and certainly will not fall out of the top twenty which makes his decision fairly easy especially since all he has accomplished at Kansas.  He will be one of the top true centers taken in the draft.

James Anderson, SG, Oklahoma State, Jr.
It makes perfect sense for the Big 12 Player of the Year to declare for the draft.  He is a surefire first round pick who could go as high as the mid-teens.  Anderson is a great scoring guard who can make it rain from deep.  His athleticism is not at the elite NBA level which could drop him into the twenties.

Talor Battle, PG, Penn State, Jr.
The leader of the Penn State “Talor Battles,” the junior point guard is putting his name in the draft but not hiring an agent which is a smart move.  I think it is a good move for him to work out for other teams so they get a feel for his game but he is not a first round pick and will likely end up back at Penn State for his senior season unless he is okay with being a second round pick heading overseas to play professionally.

Keith Benson, C, Oakland, Jr.

The seven-footer is going to test the waters but in a draft class deep of big men, he will not be a first round pick and likely return to Oakland.  A solid senior season could put him into the first round of the 2011 Draft, but more than likely he is a second round pick.

Eric Bledsoe, PG, Kentucky, Fr.

I would have liked to see Bledsoe return to Kentucky and have a year of being the alpha dog of the backcourt rather than being John Wall’s sidekick.  You cannot blame him for turning pro as he should be a first round pick (his stock is reportedly all over the board but I wouldn’t be shocked if he landed in the top ten.)  Experience will be the issue as he goes to the next level.

Craig Brackins, PF, Iowa State, Jr.
Brackins is probably kicking himself.  Had he of declared for the draft last summer, he could have been a late-lottery pick.  However, after a less than stellar junior season, the Cyclone power forward is now in danger of falling into the second round.  It is still very likely he ends up hearing his name called in the twenties, but this could be a great example of how returning to school can really hurt your stock.

Avery Bradley, G, Texas, Fr.
He is not hiring an agent leaving the option to return to school.  If he stays in the draft, I think he will be making a mistake.  He is a combo guard who has not shown the ability to run the point and is not a great outside shooter which seems to be what gets combo guards drafted.  I think he needs to return to school or he could possibly fall into the second round.

Derrick Caracter, PF, UTEP, Jr.
Caracter used his one year at UTEP to re-emerge onto the national scene.  He is reportedly set on entering the draft which might be a mistake as there is no real chance of him being a first round pick.  He is a bruiser down low, but there are still questions about his character (pun intended) dating back to his freshman season at Louisville.

DeMarcus Cousins, C, Kentucky, Fr.
He was a man among boys down low in the college game and will be a top-five pick which makes it a no-brainer for him to turn pro.  Talent is not the issue with Cousins, it’s whether or not his attitude improves or if he continues down the path of being a head case that will determine his success at the next level.

Jordan Crawford, SG, Xavier, Soph.
After blowing up in the NCAA Tournament, Crawford’s stock began to soar.  He is still keeping his options open to return to the Musketeers, but I don’t see how he is not a first round pick and will likely stay in the draft.

Ed Davis, PF, North Carolina, Soph.

A season-ending injury derailed Davis’ season late in the year but he is still declaring for the draft.  He did not have the breakout season that most scouts were expecting but will still be a lottery pick.

Malcolm Delaney, PG, Virginia Tech, Jr.

The Hokie junior is testing the waters and you cannot blame him.  He is more of a scoring point guard and in a weak point guard class has a slim chance of getting a first round guarantee which might keep him in the draft.  In all likelihood, Delaney will be returning to Va. Tech.

Devin Ebanks
, SF, West Virginia, Soph.

The lengthy forward appears to be in for good.  He is all over draft boards as I could see him going as high as the late-lottery but would not be surprised if he fell to the late-twenties.  His athleticism and defense are his strong traits, but his inconsistent outside shooting is what will hurt his stock.

Kenneth Faried, PF, Morehead State, Jr.
An under-sized post player, Faried is physical and active inside but limited in other areas of the game.  However, there does not seem to be much room for improvement as he likely is who he is at this point.  With that said, he is keeping the option available to return to school which is a good idea at this point since he probably falls into the second round.

Derrick Favors, PF, Georgia Tech, Fr.

The Yellow Jacket big man had a solid, but not spectacular freshman season.  However, his potential is as great as any player in this draft.  He is an intimidating physical presence who should only get better and better as he matures.  Favors will not fall out of the top five.

Jimmer Fredette, G, BYU, Jr.

The sharp-shooting Cougar will test the waters but not hire an agent, keeping his college eligibility alive.  The decision makes sense after a 37-point performance in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament against Florida.  I cannot see him getting a first round guarantee and would expect him to be back at BYU for his senior season.

Charles Garcia, F, Seattle U, Jr.
Garcia burst onto the scene after landing at Seattle via junior college.  Despite coming back to earth during the second half of the season, Garcia threw his name into the draft for good.  He is versatile talent, but the fact that he only played one year of Division One college basketball at a smaller school and recent questions about his attitude likely means he will fall into the second round unless a team decides to take a chance on him late in the first.

Paul George, SF, Fresno State, Soph.

More proof that social media is taking over the world; George made his intentions known that he was going to test the draft waters via twitter.  There is no questioning George’s athleticism, but he still raw in terms of his overall game.  Yet his potential should earn him a spot in the mid-late first round which likely means his days at Fresno State are done.

Manny Harris, G, Michigan, Jr.
I can’t really blame Harris for declaring.  His game has not evolved that much during his three years at Michigan and the Wolverines don’t show any signs of improving next season.  Shooting the ball is not his forte, but Harris can get to the rim and excels in transition.  He is more than likely a second round pick, but could possibly sneak into the late first.

Jeremy Hazell, SG, Seton Hall, Jr.

A pure scorer who has never met a shot he didn’t like, Hazell is not going to hire an agent yet and that is a smart decision.  Defensively, he has a long way to go and will probably be a second round pick if he does decide to forgo his senior season.

Gordon Hayward, SF, Butler, Soph.
After the Bulldogs run to the NCAA Championship Game this year, Hayward was expected to test the waters and that is exactly what he will do.  He is pretty much a guaranteed first round pick who could go as high as the mid-teens, but I have this funny feeling he will be back at Butler next season.

Xavier Henry, SG, Kansas, Fr.

“X” as Brent Musberger called him this season, will likely be a late lottery pick.  He had an up-and-down freshman season but showed enough to warrant being the first one-and-done player in Jayhawk history.

Darington Hobson, G/F, New Mexico, Jr.

I really like Hobson’s game and thinks it translates well to the next level due to his versatility.  He is putting his name in the draft, but not hiring an agent which is wise since he is not guaranteed a spot in the first round.

Adnan Hodzic, F/C, Lipscomb, Jr.

The nation’s second leading scorer is entering the draft but wisely not hiring an agent.  It seems like a good move just to get him some more exposure.  At 6-9, 255 pounds he is a big body but won’t get a first round guarantee and will likely be headed back to Lipscomb unless he chooses to play professionally overseas.

Armon Johnson, PG, Nevada, Jr.
Johnson appears to be in for good.  In a weak class of point guards, it is not a bad idea.  He should be a late first round pick but with good workouts could move into the mid-first round.

JaJuan Johnson, PF, Purdue, Jr.
The Boilermaker junior will throw his name in the draft but not hire an agent.  He is a borderline first round pick in a draft heavy on power forward prospects so I doubt he gets the first round guarantee he will need to stay in the draft.  His odds of being a first rounder should increase if he returns to Purdue for his senior season.

Wesley Johnson, SF, Syracuse, Jr.

Johnson made the absolute most of his lone season at Syracuse, proving he was one of the most versatile players in college basketball.  His decision to turn pro was expected as he figures to go anywhere from 3rd to 8th in the draft.

Dominique Jones, G, South Florida, Jr.
The classic example of declaring for the draft and not hiring an agent to test his stock, Jones won’t sign with the agent unless it’s clear he will be taken in the first round.  He is gifted scorer and a great creator, but due to his lack of outstanding athleticism and status as a combo guard, there is no guarantee of him being a first round pick.

Mac Koshwal, PF, DePaul, Jr.
I have had Koshwal in my 2010 Mock Draft since the beginning of the year so this moves comes as no surprise to me.  He tested the waters last summer which means he is in for good.  Playing on a crappy team with crappy players, it is hard to get a solid read on his game, but he is physical and skilled down low and could be a second round sleeper.

Sylven Landesberg, SG, Virginia, Soph.
After being suspended near the end of the season due to academic reasons, Landesberg decided to leave Virginia and pursue a professional career.  He is not ready to contribute in the NBA, but still has plenty of potential.  A team will likely take a second round flier on Landesberg and let him develop in the D-League or overseas for a year or two.

Gani Lawal
, PF, Georgia Tech, Jr.

Since Lawal testing the waters last year and pulled his name out, he is in for good.  He should be taken in the late-first round possibly sneaking into the late-teens.  Lawal will bring his physicality to the next level but probably figures to be more of an energy guy off the bench at the next level.

Tommy Mason-Griffin, PG, Oklahoma, Fr.

Our first “what the hell is he thinking” decision of the draft.  Mason-Griffin was not happy at Oklahoma and chose to leave school and turn pro rather than try to transfer.  Down the line, there would be a chance of him being able to play at the next level.  Right now, he is not near ready.  It is highly unlikely that he gets drafted and will probably end up overseas or in the NBDL.

Demetri, McCamey, PG, Illinois, Jr.
The Illini floor leader will put his name in the draft but leave the option open to return for his senior year.  He developed into a true point guard this past season for Bruce Weber but still has some maturity issues.  I cannot see him getting a first round guarantee even in a weak point guard draft so I expect him to be back with Illinois next season.

Elijah Millsap, SG, UAB, Jr.
Paul’s younger brother had an outstanding first season after transferring to UAB, but is not a first round prospect at this point.  He wisely chose to not hire an agent and test the waters which can only help his stock for the 2011 Draft.

E’Twaun Moore, SG, Purdue, Jr.

It seems as if Moore is declaring for the sole purpose of getting more feedback about how he can improve his game for the next level.  He is not hiring an agent and from the sound of it, has no intention to do so.  I am 99% confident he will be back in a Boilermaker uniform next season.

A.J. Ogilvy, C, Vanderbilt, Jr.
The big Aussie is in for good as he will hire an agent.  Mistake.  Ogilvy has been a bit of a disappointment since a great freshman year and will certainly not be a first round pick, and possibly could not be drafted at all.  Dumb move on his part.

Daniel Orton, C, Kentucky, Fr.

Of the five Kentucky players declaring, this is the one I disagree with.  Despite having an NBA-ready body, Orton is a still a raw talent on the offensive end.  Due to his potential, he will still likely be a first round pick, but I think he should return to the ‘Cats and become more of a threat on the offensive end thus improving his stock for 2011.

Patrick Patterson, PF, Kentucky, Jr.

Patterson is getting his degree from Kentucky this spring so there is no real reason for him to return for his senior season.  He should be a mid-late lottery pick depending on which power forwards declare and is ready to contribute on whichever team drafts him right away.

Rico Pickett, SG, Manhattan, Jr.
The Arkansas transfer is throwing his name in the draft to get exposure but has no real chance of being one of the top 60 picks and will be back with the Jaspers next season.

Herb Pope, PF, Seton Hall, Soph.
The exodus at Seton Hall continues with Pope’s decision to turn pro.  He is physical and can step out and hit perimeter shots but is an under-sized power forward which drops him into the second round.  He will need to wow scouts with workouts if he has any hope of being taken in the first round.

Jeff Robinson, SF, Seton Hall, Jr.

If this is anything other than a “I’m a junior so I mind as well throw my name out there to get some more exposure but I am obviously returning to school,” Robinson is making a bigger mistake than anybody who doesn’t take Jack Bauer’s advice.

Larry Sanders, F/C, VCU, Jr.

The VCU junior is expected to hire an agent which should come as no surprise.  He has been on the NBA radar since last season and is pretty much a first round lock due to his tremendous rebounding and shot blocking abilities.

Xavier Silas, SG, Northern Illinois, Jr.

“I don’t see why you wouldn’t do it,” Silas said.  That is true, but so is the fact that there is no chance of hitting getting drafted.  If he is not at NIU next year, I will stop watching college basketball.

Lance Stephenson, SG, Cincinnati, Fr.

You cannot blame a young man for choosing to turn pro because he needs to support his family.  Stephenson’s stock seems to be all over the board with some people thinking he will fall into the second round.  I really like Stephenson’s potential and think his ability translates better to the NBA game (aka why his nickname is “Born Ready.”)

Evan Turner, G/F, Ohio State, Jr.
Duh.  Although why is he not hiring an agent yet?  He will be a top-three pick.

Alex Tyus, F, Florida, Jr.
The headband rocking, dread-locked, balding Gator junior will not hire an agent.  He is pretty much wasting his time because he is not going to get drafted.

Ekpe Udoh, PF, Baylor, Jr.
Udoh made a huge impact in his first year at Baylor after sitting out a year transferring from Michigan.  He is already 23 years old and likely a late lottery pick so it makes complete sense for him to enter the draft, though he is holding off on signing an agent.

John Wall, PG, Kentucky, Fr.

Duh, Part 2.  Despite what people may write in the time leading up to the draft, Wall will be the first overall pick.  Debate it all you want, but there is no question in my mind.

Willie Warren, G, Oklahoma, Soph.

The Sooner sophomore had an injury-plagued, disappointing season but is declaring for the draft and hiring an agent.  Heading into the season, Warren had the potential of being a top-five pick, but now he figures to be taken anywhere from the middle of the first round to possibly falling into the second round.  Warren could be one of the wild cards of the draft.

Terrico White, SG, Ole Miss, Soph.
Scouts were expecting a breakout season from White, who at one point early in the season was a mid-lottery pick in my 2010 mock draft.  However, the Rebel sophomore failed to blossom into a lottery prospect.  Still, he has the skill set to be taken in the first round, but that is not a guarantee.  He will not hire an agent and return to Ole Miss if he is not positive he will be a first round pick.  That might not be a bad idea because a big junior year could vault him into the lottery in 2011.

Hassan Whiteside, C, Marshall, Fr.
Whiteside came from out of nowhere to be a dominant big man in Conference USA and in the process, pretty much guaranteeing himself a spot in this summer’s lottery.  He is a great shot blocker and has shown the ability to step away from the basket.  I am not sure that he is a major contributor right away, but he is loaded with upside.

Elliot Williams, G, Memphis, Soph.
Williams is in for good as he decided to sign an agent.  He was the model of consistency for the Tigers this season and should be a first round pick.  My real question is whether or not he is a two-guard in the NBA or will have to learn to play the point.

Chris Wright, SF, Dayton, Jr.
He is just testing the waters and not hiring an agent which is a smart decision.  Wright is a high-flyer but doesn’t have much of a perimeter game which hurts his stock and probably keeps him in the second round this season.  He is better off returning to Dayton.

Jahmar Young, SG, New Mexico State, Jr.

The Aggie junior is testing the waters and will likely withdraw his name from the draft because he likely won’t get drafted at all.  It doesn’t hurt for him to at least throw his name in and get some feedback and attention to possibly improve his stock in 2011.

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