NBA's Draft Rules Hurting the League
David Stern is going to have to really think about changing the rules for entering the NBA Draft.
As it stands, the rule states that a player either has to be 19 years old, one year removed from high school graduating class, or play at least one year of college basketball.
The rule itself has done more damage then good.
Should the NBA go back to the old rule that was in place, which allowed players to declare for the NBA Draft when they turned 18?
The answer is, no way!
Yes there are players who could possibly play right away and contribute, but usually those are the exceptions to the rule.
Let's take a look at some recent one-and-done players.
2008 NBA Draft
Derrick Rose was the first pick, and in 81 games he averaged 16.8 points, 6.3 assists, 3.9 rebounds, .8 steals, 2.5 turnovers. He shot 47.5 percent from the field, 22.2 percent from three, and 78.8 percent from the free throw line.
Rose is going to be a special player in the NBA. What's most impressive is his field goal percentage and his ability to get to the rim.
What Rose will need to improve on to become more effective with his drive is his outside shot. Shooting 22.2 percent from three allows most teams to protect themselves from his drive and dare him to shoot jumpers.
Michael Beasley had a decent rookie season with the Miami Heat. In 81 games he averaged 13.9 points, 5.4 rebounds, one assist, .5 blocks, on 47.2 percent from the field, 40.7 and 77.2 percent from the free throw line.
Beasley has the offense to be a solid player in the NBA, but at times he was put on the bench due to his lack of defense and rebounding. In order for Beasley to become a more consistent player and get more minutes for the Heat, he is going to have to work on rebounding the ball and playing defense.
OJ Mayo, the third pick in the draft, averaged in 82 games: 18.5 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 1.1 steals, 43.8 percent from the field, 38.4 from beyond the arc, and 87.9 percent from the free throw line.
Mayo will always be a scorer, but what was more impressive was his shooting from beyond the arc. What will be interesting to see from Mayo, because of his ability to hit free throws, is if he becomes more aggressive at attacking the hoop. If he could double or even triple his free throw numbers he'd be a mid-20 points per game scorer.
If Mayo can find that aggressiveness he'd obviously shoot a higher percentage from the floor.
Kevin Love, the fifth pick in the draft, had a decent rookie year. In 81 games he averaged 11.1 points per game, 9.1 rebounds, one assist, .6 blocks, on 45.9 percent shooting from the field, and 78.9 percent from the free throw line.
Love should be able to increase his field goal percentage and be a threat to score with a healthy Al Jefferson. Love's ability to hit the 12-15 foot jumper will definitely be a benefit for him and with Love's ability to use his body and his footwork he should be a double digit rebounder next year as well and he should improve his scoring as well.
Eric Gordon, the sixth pick of the draft averaged through 76 games: 16.1 points, 2.6 rebounds, 2.8 assists, one steal, shot 45.6 from the field, 38.9 percent from beyond the arc, and 85.4 percent from the floor.
Gordon, like Mayo, should turn into a 20-point scorer next year. He actually got to the line more than Mayo did, so Gordon was a little more aggressive going to the hoop. His most impressive feat though was shooting 38.9 percent from three point land.
Jerryd Bayless, the 11th pick of the draft in 53 games averaged: 4.3 points per game, 1.5 assists, 1.1 rebounds, on 36.5 percent shooting, 25.9 percent from beyond the arc, and 80.6 percent from the line.
Bayless is an undersized shooting guard trying to play the point guard position. He has to prove to the Trail Blazers that he can take smarter shots and start passing the ball more, because the Blazers believe he could be a point guard. There's been rumors of Portland possibly trading Bayless to get a more proven point guard.
He didn't get very many minutes for the surprising Trail Blazers team, but in order for him to get more minutes from the Blazers, he's going to have to shoot better from the field and from beyond the arc.
Anthony Randolph the 14th pick of the draft in 63 games averaged: 7.9 points, 5.8 rebounds, .8 assists, 1.2 blocks, on 46.2 percent shooting, and 71.6 percent from the free throw line.
Randolph had a little bit of an immature attitude at the start of the season with the Warriors and rarely saw time on the court. Toward the end of the year as his attitude improved and his work ethic improved, Randolph was able to show why he was chosen as the 14th pick in the draft.
Unlike Brandan Wright in the 2007 draft, Randolph is a better rebounder and shot blocker and he can handle the ball at his height. He even got great praise from Lamar Odom from the Los Angeles Lakers because Randolph doesn't back down.
What will remain to be seen, because Randolph is built more for the small forward position than power forward, is if Randolph will be able to consistently hit 15-20 foot jumpers.
Kosta Koufos the 23rd pick in 48 games averaged: 4.7 points, 2.9 rebounds, .4 assists, .6 blocks, on 50.8 percent shooting from the field, and 70.6 percent from the free throw line.
Koufos is another one on the list from Ohio State who left after one year and should have came back. Koufos may get more playing time next year if Carlos Boozer or Paul Milsap don't come back.
Even with that, it will only be a small contribution from Koufos and he will more than likely be one of those centers who just takes up a spot on the roster, but barely sees action unless it's garbage time.
Donte Greene the 28th overall pick in 55 games averaged: 3.8 points, 1.6 rebounds, .5 assists, .3 steals, on 32.6 percent shooting, and 85.3 percent from the free throw line.
It's obvious that Greene mostly saw time during blowouts. His shooting percentage definitely needs to improve so he can even remotely see time during important parts of games. Greene was definitely a player who should have played at least another year of college.
2007 NBA Draft
Greg Oden first pick: 61 games 8.9 points, 7 rebounds, .5 assists, 1.1 blocks, 3.9 fouls per game, shot 56.4 percent from the field, and 63.7 percent from the free throw line.
Oden showed flashes of why he was taken No. 1 by the Portland Trail Blazers, but he also showed why he should have spent more time at Ohio State.
For one, he hadn't been healthy even during his time at Ohio State. After he was drafted by the Trail Blazers during the offseason, he hurt his knee and had to have microfracture surgery.
This season, Oden was able to play and show how he can work on the offensive glass and he did some good work on the defensive glass as well, but his problem was that defensively his lack of speed and footwork hampered him and he got into foul trouble much too quickly.
As shown, his stats he averaged about 4 fouls per game in only 21.5 minutes of play, so he was not able to stay on the floor for the Trail Blazers.
Kevin Durant, the second pick in the draft, has averaged in 154 games: 22.7 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 1.1 steals, on 45.3 percent shooting, 35.9 percent from beyond the arc, and 86.7 percent from the free throw line.
Durant is a small forward with a great jumper and when he's on he doesn't miss. He hits the three really well and his long arms and height make it difficult for perimeter players to guard him or at least effect his shot.
Mike Conley Jr. was the fourth pick and has played in 135 games since being drafted, averaging 10.3 points per game, 4.3 assists, 3.4 rebounds, 1 steal, on 43.7 percent shooting, 38.3 percent from beyond the arc, and 78.4 percent from the line.
Conley is another player who came out from Ohio State way too soon and honestly the only way he stays in the league is if he becomes a backup. The only thing he really brings to the table is the ability to shoot the three which he shot it at a 40.6 percent clip this past season.
He doesn't have a very good jumper besides the three and because he's on the relatively small side for a point guard, he's not the type of guy who's going to be driving to the hoop on a consistent basis, so he's not going to be a player with a lot of assists.
Brandan Wright the eighth pick has played in 77 games and has averaged: 6.2 points , 3.3 rebounds, .4 assists, .8 blocks, on 52.8 percent shooting, and 72 percent from the line.
The problem with Wright though is his lack of size, but he is extremely athletic. Wright has shown that he has a very good little jump hook, but his lack of shooting range is going to cost him, especially in the Golden State Warriors' offense, and his biggest problem is he doesn't rebound enough due to his lack of size.
Spencer Hawes, the 10th pick, has averaged in 148 games: 8.2 points per game, 5.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists, .9 blocks per game, on 46.4 percent shooting, 32.4 percent from beyond the arc, and 66 percent from the free throw line.
Hawes did contribute a lot more for the Kings in his second year in the NBA averaging 11.4 points per game and 7.1 rebounds, but with Justin Thompson's play last year as a rookie it seems Hawes is more suitable coming off the bench for the Kings because he can hit the three and score down low as well.
As for taking Hawes as the 10th selection in the NBA, it seems like it might have been a little high for him considering he may be a spot starter/role player for his career.
Javaris Crittenton the 19th pick of the draft has averaged in 113 games: 5.3 points per game, 1.8 assists, 2.5 rebounds, .5 steals, on 44.2 percent shooting, 23.1 from beyond the arc, and 63.8 percent from the free throw line.
Crittenton came in with a lot of hype, but has not shown much since being taken as the 19th pick. He's been on three teams in two years and hasn't been able to get consistent minutes. Coming out early was not a good idea for Crittenton.
Daquean Cook another pick out of Ohio State with the 23rd selection who hasn't lived up to his billing. He's played in 133 games so far and has averaged: 9.1 points per game, 2.8 rebounds, 1.1 assists, .5 steals, 37.8 percent from the field, 36.7 percent from beyond the arc, and 85 percent from the line.
Cook has shown one thing since coming into the league and that is he wants to shoot. Yet, he is not a good shooter at all, seeing how so far for his career he has shot 37.8 percent from the floor.
He does have a decent stroke from the free throw line and from beyond the arc, but if he continues to struggle from the field he's not going to see very many minutes and will be out of the league very shortly.
2006 NBA Draft
Tyrus Thomas, the fourth pick of the draft, has played in 225 games and has averaged: 7.7 points per game, 5 rebounds, .9 assists, 1.3 blocks, on 44.7 percent from the floor, and 72.4 percent from the free throw line.
Thomas is extremely athletic and has turned into a pretty fine shot blocker, but the problem for him in his three years in the NBA is that he's been inconsistent. He isn't that good of a shooter, but has the leaping ability to become a solid offensive rebounder.
2005 NBA Draft
Marvin Williams, second pick in the draft, has averaged in 284 games: 12.5 points per game, 5.5 rebounds, 1.4 assists, .9 steals, on 45.8 percent from the field, 35.5 from beyond the arc, and 80.6 percent from the free throw line.
Williams is an athletic player who hasn't lived up to the the number two pick. He's had some injuries as well. He is a solid defender and needs to stay healthy for the Atlanta Hawks. He has a decent outside jumper and can hit his free throws, but he also could become more aggressive and a 16-and-8 type of guy, that is if he can stay healthy.
Martell Webster was taken out of high school by the Portland Trail Blazers as the sixth pick and has been horribly inconsistent fro the Blazers. For his career he has averaged in 219 games: 12.9 points per game, 4.8 rebounds, 1.3 assists, .7 steals, on 40.8 percent shooting, 37.2 percent from beyond the arc, and 74.8 percent from the free throw line.
Webster missed all but one game this past season, but it is easy to see what Webster needs to work on: raising his field goal percentage. With the roster the Trail Blazers have right now there may be no room for Webster and he could be used as trade bait due to his ability to hit the three, which he hits for a solid percentage from.
Andrew Bynum is another player taken out of high school as the 10th pick in the draft. He, like Webster, has been horribly inconsistent and has suffered through injuries as well. For his career in 213 games Bynum has averaged: 8.8 points per game, 6.2 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 1.5 blocks, on 56.6 percent from the field, and 67.1 percent from the free throw line.
Bynum has shown flashes what he can do, but those injuries have hurt him. He's played in just 85 games the past two seasons, that's barely over half the games played. For Bynum to become successful he needs to stay healthy and start contributing on a more consistent basis.
Gerald Green, another high schooler has failed to live up the expectations from when he was drafted. In just 181 games he has averaged: 7.5 points per game, 2 rebounds, .8 assists, .3 steals, on 43.9 percent from the field, 35.8 percent from behind the arc, and 81 percent from the free throw line.
Green has never lived up to the billing since he was drafted and is one of the reasons he's bounced from team to team. He is still young, but in the next couple years if he doesn't start contributing he's more than likely going to run out of chances.
So out of the one year players and the few high schoolers, only six have had any kind of success and 15 have yet to make an impact. So six out of 21 is equal to a 29 percent success rate for the so called "one and done" players and a failure rate of 71 percent.
It is time for David Stern and the NBA to stop the madness of the "one and done" players and start having a draft policy similar to the National Football League.
Honestly, is it better for a player to sit on the bench for the first few years of their career or have the opportunity to play at the college level to expand their game and get a shot at leading a team?
Yes, there are going to be those big name talents who could have easily been taken directly out of high school, but the reality is it is better for the player to stay in school and not go directly out of high school or even after one year playing college basketball.
Stern created the mess, and now he has to fix it. Implementing the rule to have players wait until they are at least a junior will cause more competition on the college level, as well as create more prepared players for the NBA.
It is not effecting players in anyways having to wait a few years before they are drafted into the league. Will the player lose any money if they have to wait two extra years before being drafted?
If they had the talent to be drafted right out of high school or at least after their first year of college then why would it effect them to wait until they were a junior and can at least be close to completing a degree? So, even if they don't work out in the NBA they have a degree to back themselves up on.
College is not a prison for players, and it is disgusting that it seems that people who are against it make it seem like players are being forced to either go overseas to play since the rule as of now is one year out of high school or at least a year of college.
What happens after a player retires? Then what? Live off of the money they made from their career and just sit there and relax? If anything they'll be kicking themselves for not getting their degree.
Players come and players go. Not every player drafted plays 10-plus years and makes millions and millions of dollars. It makes sense for the NBA to change the rules because the college level is pretty much the best system the NBA has for developing players.
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