Every year when the NBA draft rolls around, there is a period where basketball players have to ask themselves the question: Should I enter my name in the NBA draft or withdraw and return to college? Of course, it is pretty early to say if the decisions that were made were the right ones, especially this early. However, some decisions seemed pretty questionable and some decisions turned out to be very beneficial to the player whose stock was in question. What were the best/worst decisions that players made for this NBA draft?
Bad Decision-DeAndre Jordan (Texas A&M)- After the college season, it looked as if Jordan would be a top pick at the center position right behind Brook Lopez. Jordan looked like a guy who could come into the NBA and provide a team with a good rebounder and an okay scorer. However, when the draft camps got under way and Jordan saw his stock keep falling and falling he still decided to keep his name in the draft. What he got himself was a 2nd round pick to the Los Angeles Clippers, a team that has a very successful center in Chris Kaman and has some great power forwards in Al Thornton, Elton Brand, and even Nick Fazekas. Jordan should have taken his name out of the draft and returned to school where he could have polished his skills and in 2010 maybe be a top 10 pick.
Good Decision-Jeremy Pargo (Gonzaga)- Pargo will be a very good player in the NBA at some point in his career, and he probably would have been a good rookie next season. However, in a draft that was loaded with guards it looked as if Pargo would be a second round selection and thus have to settle for second round money. He now knows how good of a player he can be, and NBA GM’s also know that he could be on their draft slate next season. Pargo will have another year to play on a great college team and be a potential top 20 pick next season.
Bad Decision-Chase Budinger (Arizona)- There are probably a lot of people that disagree with me here, but its been two years in a row where Budinger has looked to be a lottery pick and I just don’t see him improving his stock so much next year that he will propel himself to a top 10 pick. Budinger will be a great NBA player, and he is going back to a team that probably won’t be too successful after the loss of Brandon Jennings and Jerryd Bayless. Budinger should have kept his name in the draft and received the millions of dollars that comes with being a lottery pick.
Good Decision-Jerel McNeal (Marquette)- McNeal got his name onto a lot of teams boards during last year’s NCAA tournament where he almost carried Marquette to an upset over Stanford in the second round. By backing out of the draft he will not only improve his stock, but he will come back to a team that is loaded and ready to win next year. McNeal is a great defensive player and will play a big role on an NBA team some day, but he made the right decision to pass up a second round selection in 2008 for a possible first round selection in ’09.
Bad Decision-Davon Jefferson (USC)- I really thought Jefferson would pull out of the draft, and when he decided to stay I knew that it would be a bad decision. Just how bad was it? Well, Jefferson didn’t get drafted and now will be forced to either try out for NBA teams over the summer or play in Europe. This kid really could have had a good future if he would have stayed in college and possibly been a mid second round pick in the future.
Bad Decision-DJ Augustin (Texas)- I really feel like Augustin could have been the No.1 pick in 2009, and also have been in serious contention for Player of the Year awards in the NCAA. Augustin was a high pick, but he could have had more if he waited one more season. Don’t forget if he stays at Texas they are a national championship caliber team.
Other players considered- Marreese Speights (Florida, Good Decision), Kosta Koufos (Ohio State, Good Decision)