Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
The top three prospects in the 2014 NBA draft – Joel Embiid and Andrew Wiggins of Kansas, and Duke’s Jabari Parker – will not attend next week’s predraft combine in Chicago, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Some players, including last season’s No. 1 overall pick Anthony Bennett, have bypassed the annual draft combine with injuries, but the bailing of the top three prospects is unprecedented.
Teams were furnished with a list of players planning to participate in the combine in recent days, and the reported absence of Embiid and Parker pushed Wiggins’ representatives with BDA Sports to pull him out on Sunday night.
There are two very opposite ways to approach this:
1: Of course these guys would skip the combine. They have nothing to prove and everything to lose in something like this. If they check in with a vertical leap that’s lower than expected, or perform poorly in some of the drills, they could go from consensus top 3 to out of the top 5, and that could cost them millions of dollars. Plenty of guys have had bad combines for various reasons, so there’s no use in participating in that cattle call and running that risk. They can hold individual pro days or just wait until they have workouts for each team and better control the environment.
2: What do they have to hide? It’s just a workout. You go, they see how fast you can run, how high you can jump, and how easily you can pick up certain drills. None of this is any secret. Scouts have watched these guys play all season long. The game film from each of their games has been dissected many times over. So if “foot speed is an issue” appears on one of their scouting charts, it’s not going to be a surprise when that player doesn’t blaze past everyone on the floor at the combine.
Maybe I’m just conditioned to accept this is the norm, but I was more surprised when I read this was unprecedented than when these guys announced they were skipping the combine. I feel like NFL guys do it all the time so I didn’t think this was that big of a deal. All three will come to places like Boston to work out for the teams that might draft them. Danny Ainge will get the same chance to talk to all them in Boston as he would have at the combine. I doubt this changes much about where these guys are rated on the Celtics’ draft board. The Celtics will rate the individual workouts, compare them to the game footage, and make a decision.
This basically means that we amateur scouts won’t get a chance to see their measurables and how they stack against other players. I’m personally thrilled about this because it prevents fuel for ridiculous debates.
Page 2: That’s DOCTOR Stevens, thank you very much
— James M. Danko (@ButlerPrez) May 10, 2014
Celtics coach Brad Stevens received an honorary doctorate from Butler University Saturday at the school’s commencement ceremonies.
The doctorate recognized Stevens’ contributions to the university and its basketball program.
Here’s Brad’s speech from the commencement ceremony:
“Don’t let your attitude be controlled by the circumstances.” Wise words.
Congrats to Coach Stevens.
The rest of the links: