Villanova's Omari Spellman to Stay in 2018 NBA Draft, Hire an Agent

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMay 30, 2018

SAN ANTONIO, TX - APRIL 02:  Omari Spellman #14 of the Villanova Wildcats reacts against the Michigan Wolverines in the second half during the 2018 NCAA Men's Final Four National Championship game at the Alamodome on April 2, 2018 in San Antonio, Texas.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Villanova power forward Omari Spellman has elected to keep his name in the 2018 NBA draft and will hire an agent, according to Joe Juliano of the Philadelphia Inquirer

Spellman posted his goodbye to Villanova on Wednesday: 

Spellman, 20, is the fourth starter from Villanova's title-winning team to enter June 21's draft at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, joining point guard Jalen Brunson, wing Mikal Bridges and combo guard Donte DiVincenzo. 

The redshirt freshman had a strong season, averaging 10.9 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game while shooting 47.6 percent from the field and 43.3 percent from three.

Sam Vecenie of The Athletic called him a "polarizing" prospect and one who should fit as a stretch 5 offensively given his range on the perimeter, though other questions remain in his game:

"He can attack heavy closeouts with really good ball-handling ability for a center. He also establishes position well both defensively on the block and in rebounding. But his defensive game still has a lot of questions. He doesn't move particularly well away from the basket and will be a liability in space. At the rim, he's good with verticality but doesn't have the length or height to really affect the biggest guys at the NBA level. It's possible he can be a really nice bench scorer in the Marreese Speights mold. But you’ll need to work around the defense."

Spellman is a fringe first-round prospect who likely won't last long in the second round if he slips. B/R's Jonathan Wasserman didn't have him among his top-30 prospects following the NBA combine, while SI.com's Jeremy Woo projected him to come off the board at No. 40 overall to the Brooklyn Nets (via the Los Angeles Lakers) in his most recent mock draft.

Spellman is a safe bet to be selected at some point early in the second round, and there's the possibility his offensive potential as a stretch big will vault him into the late first round.

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