Kentucky's Brandon Boston Jr. Declares for 2021 NBA Draft

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 20, 2021

Kentucky's Brandon Boston Jr. (3) shoots against Kansas' Marcus Garrett (0) during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Darron Cummings/Associated Press

Brandon Boston Jr.'s college career is over after one season.

The Kentucky wing declared for the 2021 NBA draft on Saturday in an Instagram post, noting he will also sign with an agent.

"Being a professional basketball player has been my dream for as long as I can remember," Boston wrote. "I'm excited for this opportunity and I know that I will have the foundation to handle anything that comes my way because of my time as a Wildcat."

Boston arrived at Kentucky as a 5-star prospect, the No. 5 overall player and No. 1 shooting guard in the class of 2020, per 247Sports' composite rankings. Expectations were understandably high given his ceiling and the program's pedigree, although the 2020-21 campaign did not exactly go according to plan.

The Wildcats didn't even make the NCAA men's tournament and finished with a losing record at 9-16.

Boston flashed his potential at times and averaged 11.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.3 steals per game but shot just 35.5 percent from the field and 30.0 percent from three-point range.

Still, there is plenty to like about his NBA prospects.

Boston is 6'7" with the length and athleticism to be a difference-maker. He can guard multiple positions on the wing and is quick enough to stay in front of guards. He is also long enough to bother outside shooters and battle for boards even from the backcourt.

Offensively, the 19-year-old can attack the basket off the bounce, flash into space when defenders collapse on teammates, finish through contact at the rim and get out in transition.

The shooting numbers are a concern, but Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman projected him to be a late-first-round pick in a February mock draft with the idea there will be "a team willing to buy low and bet on his shooting being better than this year's numbers suggest." 

If the shooting is better, Boston should be a successful NBA player even if he didn't get an opportunity to play in the Big Dance at Kentucky.