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Undrafted NBA Free Agents 2018: Rumors and Predictions for Biggest Names

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistJune 23, 2018

Duke's Trevon Duval (1) dribbles against Louisville during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Durham, N.C., Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
Gerry Broome/Associated Press

Some college basketball stars aren't valued in the NBA draft. 

With professional franchises enamored with developing the raw talent of one-and-done prospects instead of drafting the finished product, some of the top players from the collegiate level didn't get drafted Thursday.

That leaves undrafted free agents looking for teams to latch on to for training camp deals and opportunities to prove themselves throughout the Summer League. 

Since the draft ended, the best prospects who weren't taken with one of the 60 selections have found homes for summer at the least as they try to either make an NBA roster, or earn a spot on a G-League roster to further impress their parent clubs when the season rolls around. 

          

Top Undrafted Free Agents

Trevon Duval 

Trevon Duval entered Duke as one of the most heralded high school players along with Marvin Bagley III and Wendell Carter Jr. 

Before his only season with the Blue Devils, Duval was widely regarded as a potential lottery pick, but he spent Thursday night watching four teammates get selected and not hearing his name called. 

Duval is going to spend time in the Summer League with the Houston Rockets, per Yahoo's Shams Charania: 

Shams Charania @ShamsCharania

Sources: Undrafted Duke guard Trevon Duval has agreed to join the Houston Rockets for summer league.

In order to make Houston's roster for the regular season, Duval needs to outperform fellow rookies De'Anthony Melton and Vincent Edwards, who the Rockets obtained during the draft. 

Duval must impress as a scorer and distributor, as he averaged 10.3 points and 5.6 assists per game in his lone season at Duke. 

Although he faces an uphill climb, Duval has the talent to make an NBA roster, but with so many talented guards in Houston, he might have to start in the G-League to get minutes. 

Prediction: Starts season in G-League

     

Malik Newman 

Malik Newman took a circuitous route to the professional level, as he went from star recruit at Mississippi State to transfer and role player at Kansas. 

Newman, 21, would've been a lottery pick if prospects were allowed to leave for the NBA from high school, but instead, he needs to earn a roster spot with the Los Angeles Lakers, who he signed a two-way contract with, per Charania: 

Shams Charania @ShamsCharania

Sources: Undrafted Kansas guard Malik Newman has agreed to a two-way contract with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Just like the rest of the undrafted players, Newman has plenty of work to do to land on an NBA roster in October, but the two-way contract helps since he has a safety net of going to the G-League if he doesn't make the Lakers roster. 

Newman should feel a level of comfort during the Summer League, as he'll be playing alongside college teammate Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, who went 47th overall to the Lakers. 

The forward should enter the summer with plenty of confidence, as he closed his collegiate career in impressive fashion with eight double-digit performances, with six of them being over 20 points. 

Prediction: Starts season in G-League, ends up on NBA roster

          

Rawle Alkins 

Arizona's Rawle Alkins was one of two Wildcat stars surprisingly excluded from the top 60 picks. 

Alkins signed what's known as an Exhibit 10 contract with the Toronto Raptors, per Mike Christy of the Arizona Daily Star

Sports Illustrated's Jeremy Woo first reported the deal between Alkins and the Raptors: 

Jeremy Woo @JeremyWoo

Source: Arizona wing Rawle Alkins has agreed to a training camp deal with the Toronto Raptors.

The deal gives Alkins a $50,000 bonus and an opportunity to make Toronto's roster, which might go through some changes with new head coach Nick Nurse in charge. 

Although he's a solid player, Alkins was overshadowed at Arizona by No. 1 overall selection Deandre Ayton and Allonzo Trier, who also wasn't selected Thursday. 

Alkins could develop in a similar fashion to Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby, who thrived in the Toronto system while DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry basked in the spotlight. 

The 20-year-old could also start the season with Toronto's G-League affiliate 905 Raptors, which has been one of the most successful teams in the developmental league.

Prediction: Starts season in G-League, ends up on NBA roster 

          

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90

Statistics obtained from ESPN.com