Mitch McGary made a mistake last year by not capitalizing on a weak draft class and a surprising tournament run vaulting him into Lottery discussion -- he opted to stay at Michigan for another year. Unfortunately, he hurt his back, had surgery in November and missed the entire season. Now, he's a fringe first rounder, but McGary's poking the 2014 NBA Draft bear along with teammates Nik Stauskas and Glenn Robinson III.
The trio, all sophomores, have until April 27th to make it official, but what they really did was request an evaluation from the NBA Undergraduate Advisory Committee.
The committee analyzes participating players and delivers a narrow window of where the individual could be selected in the draft. These evaluations are typically cautious in the projection of a prospect's draft position.
Michigan coach John Beilein is scheduled to meet with the media on Wednesday afternoon and is expected to update where McGary, Robinson and Stauskas are in the process.
I'd expect Stauskas and GRIII to leave Ann Arbor, with McGary's decision predicated upon how well he can move after rehab.
Both McGary and Robinson went unloved on the Liberty Ballers Sixers Draft Big Board 2.0, but Stauskas saw himself jump from #20 to #13 this time around. Here's what Roy said about him: "6'6 shooting guards with a pure stroke (44.1% from 3 over the past two years) are rare in today's NBA. He may not be a definite lottery pick, but the Big Ten Player of the Year will be a solid pro for years to come."
So much depends on the Lottery and where the Pelicans land, but Nik wouldn't be a bad fit next to Michael Carter-Williams in that shootery 2-spot. Also, he's so much more athletic than people give him credit for. A bit early for him at 9 or 10 though, considering his defense and strength issues. But if Hinkie wants him, he'll go get him.
Robinson is a better shooter than his college stats indicate, though I may think that because I consistently mix him up with Glen Rice, Jr. He's a bouncy athlete and feels like a nice role player if he can hit shots at a better clip. Wouldn't be a liability on defense, either. Solid second round candidate.
McGary is also a possibility with the Sixers' own second rounder if he comes out. He's a smart, bruising, energetic, maybe too energetic big man with legitimate size. Would be fine with him as a first big off the bench type. Can't shoot much, but just let him run into people and scream and I think everybody's happy.
I hope they all go out and make their money, but also because I want 2014-15 to be The Year Of Caris LeVert.
Also, Joel Embiid makes it official today. Woj reported it weeks ago, and Reporting Woj is never wrong, but it's good to hear it officially. I ranked him #4 on my Big Board because I'm so concerned about his back. Without any medical training whatsoever, it feels like the kind of thing that will bother him his whole career. Please be healthy, Joel.