DraftExpress has been informed of a number of players that have decided to keep their name in the 2006 draft. Final Final Update
-Chad Ford of ESPN.com is reporting
that Ali Traore
and Brad Newley
have also decided to remove their name from the early-entry list.
We've learned that British big man Joel Freeland
has also decided to leave his name in the draft. Freeland made a name for himself at the RBK Eurocamp in Treviso and is considered a strong candidate to be drafted in the 25-45 portion of the draft. Freeland will be represented by Arn Tellem.
(one last update:) Pinnacle Sports Management agent Marc Cornstein informed DraftExpress tonight that clients Milovan Rakovic
and Marko Lekic
have removed their name from this year's draft. Damir Markota
on the other hand has not pulled out and will remain eligible.Kosta Perovic
will remain in the draft, according to his agent Rade Filipovich. Perovic is on his way to the States right now after finishing up in the Serbian playoffs, where he averaged 17 points and 11 rebounds, according to Filipovich. He will work out for 5-6 NBA teams. edit:
An alert reader linked and informed us of his playoff stats, which show that he averaged 13 points and 6 rebounds, but only in 22 minutes per game. Final Update
s father informed DraftExpress that his son has made the decision to return to Pitt for his senior year. Mr. Gray informed us that the consistent feedback theyve received has been that hes a mid to late first rounder, but that he was too excited about the aura surrounding his return to Pitt for his senior year and did not want to pass that up. Grays decision means that Pitt will be considered one of the favorites to win the Big East next season, and he will be viewed as one of the top big men in college basketball after Joakim Noah
and Greg Oden
-With Grays return in the books, the decisions of all the top early-entry candidates have become known. Here is a breakdown of the early-entry list, with who is staying in the draft and who is pulling out. Staying In NCAALaMarcus Aldridge Renaldo Balkman Will Blalock Josh Boone Ronnie Brewer Shannon Brown Guillermo Diaz Quincy Douby Mike Efevberha Jordan Farmar Thomas Gardner Rudy Gay Daniel Gibson Tedric Hill Alexander Johnson Kyle Lowry Paul Millsap Adam Morrison
Patrick O'Bryant Danilo Pinnock Leon Powe Rajon Rondo Cedric Simmons Marcus Slaughter Curtis Stinson Tyrus Thomas
P.J. Tucker Darius Washington
Jr. Marcus Williams Shawne Williams
will reportedly hire agent Andre Buck (who works with Leon Rose) and therefore is closing the door on returning to South Carolina. InternationalAndrea Bargnani Saer Sene Lior Eliyahu Oleksiy Pecherov Sergio Rodriguez Kosta PerovicDamir MarkotaJoel FreelandPulling Out NCAA
Akbar Abdul-Ahad Arron Afflalo Morris Almond Jahsha Bluntt Bobby Brown Cem DincNick FazekasAaron Gray Brandon HeathEkene Ibekwe Coby Karl Aleks MaricRichard Roby Blake Schilb Mustafa Shakur Ian Vouyoukas International
Rafael Hettsheimeier Renaldas Seibutis Tiago Splitter Hrvoje Peric Mickael MokongoMilovan RakovicMarko Lekic No Information One Way or the OtherNCAA
Travis DeGroot Carl Elliott
Donald Jeffes David Johnson Trey Johnson
Albert Weber International
Andriy Agafonov Nemanja Aleksandrov
Pape-Philippe Yannick Bokolo
Carlos Cedeno Tadija Dragicevic Kyrylo Fesenko Brad Newley Giorgos Printezis
Aleksandar Rindin Dusan Sakota Sidiki Sidibe Sun Yue Ali Traore Ejike Ugboaja
Sefolosha MeasurementsThabo Sefolosha
was surprisingly not invited to the physical-only portion of the NBA pre-draft camp, but DraftExpress has managed to obtain his measurements taken by an NBA team that worked him out last week in Orlando. Sefolosha measured out at 6-7 in shoes, 207 pounds, with an astounding 7-2 wingspan and 8-11 ½ standing reach.
Sefolosha worked out with the Minnesota Timberwolves today against Brandon Roy
, Rudy Gay
and Shawne Williams
and reportedly had an outstanding workout, only losing one of four games in the one on one competitive portion against the two likely top 10 picks. Portland Trading Up?
Rumors over the past few days have linked Portland with a trade for one of New Jerseys first round picks, either #22 or #23. The Trailblazers are attempting to package the #30 and #31 picks to move up. A player they are reportedly interested in is Florida State power forward Alexander Johnson
, who Head Coach Nate McMillan
and other members of the Portland front office watched workout last week at the Orlando pre-draft Camp. Johnson fits McMillans personality to a T, and would likely not get past Memphis at 24 if he is not picked earlier. Josh Boone Guaranteed by New York?
The New York Knicks are reportedly shopping their late first round pick (#29), as a few teams are apparently interested in moving up, down or in to the draft. One of those teams is the Miami Heat. What this means is that Josh Boone
is apparently not as firm at #29 as many may have thought. Boone has continued to work out for numerous teams drafting in the late first round, to mixed results so far. One respected executive who recently worked him out said that he had a horrible workout here, but someone is probably going to make a mistake and draft him in the late first round.
-West coast sources informed us today that Mustafa Shakur
has cancelled his remaining private workouts and will be returning to Arizona for his senior year.
has removed his name from the draft after a disappointing showing in the Orlando pre-draft camp, and will be returning to Cal State Fullerton for his senior year.
will also be pulling his name out and return to Maryland for his senior year.
is staying in the draft, but will not hire an agent, and is therefore reserving the right to return to Memphis should he go undrafted. Phoenix Looking to Move Up?
Multiple sources over the past week have informed DraftExpress that the Phoenix Suns are looking to package both of their first round picks (#21 and #27) to move up, likely into the teens portion of the draft. The two players they are reportedly most interested in are Rodney Carney
, Saer Sene
and Thabo Sefolosha
. There are rumors that the Suns might even try to trade with Chicago and move up all the way to the #2 pick, a deal which would most likely involve Shawn Marion
. Seattle Trading Out?
The budget balancing problems that the Seattle Supersonics are currently encountering may lead them to trade down or out of the draft. The Sonics would like to hire an assistant coach for next year, and are hoping the money theyd save will be enough to help them with that goal. If Shelden Williams
is not available with the 10th pick, that would most likely be the direction they head in. The asking price is reportedly a solid 2007 1st rounder, and/or cash and a pick in this years early 2nd round.
The headliner in terms of whether or not there was a decision to make is Sergio Rodriguez
, who was looking to secure a commitment in the first round in order to stay in, and may have indeed received it. His American agent Herb Rudoy informed us that Rodriguez will be staying in, but was not willing to comment on whether that means he has a guarantee from a team drafting in the first round. In response to the question of whether Rodriguez will be returning to the States from Spain in order to conduct additional private workouts, Rudoy said that there is no plan to do such a thing right now. The teams that are considered most likely to have interest in Rodriguez include the Sacramento Kings, Cleveland Cavaliers and Phoenix Suns, although Rudoy refused to comment on any of that.
Rudoy also informed us that Tiago Splitter
will not keep his name in the draft, as expected, which means that he likely could not secure a commitment from a team in the top 10 or 12 of the draft, as Rudoy said he was seeking last week. Fellow Interperformances client Rafael Hettsheimeier will also pull his name out.
On a less surprising note, Jordan Farmar
will also keep his name in the draft and is likely to hire super agent Arn Tellem as his representative.
Steven Heumann of Entersport informed us that two of his international clients, Lior Eliyahu
and Oleksiy Pecherov
will also not be pulling their name out at the deadline.
Eliyahu is the more surprising of the two, as there is still some uncertainty over where he might be drafted, if at all, along with the fact that he will not be able to make it over to the NBA this upcoming season due to his commitment to the Israeli army. Many thought that Eliyahu would need a promise in the 2nd round in order to stay in, but Heumann informed us that he unequivocally does not have one.
Sources in Israel have informed us that Eliyahu is likely to leave Galil Eliyon this summer and join Euroleague powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv. Maccabi is still searching for a head coach after the retirement of Pini Gershon, with the frontrunner right now being American/Israeli Benetton Treviso head coach David Blatt.
Thanks to Israeli journalist Yarone Arbel of Salnews.com for giving us the heads up on Eliyahu staying in.