2016 NBA Draft Early Entrants: April 15, 2016

The rules for entering the draft have changed a bit. As long as a player does not hire an agent he may "test the draft waters" up to three consecutive years. Which is why you will hear John Calipari say every one of his players is declaring for the draft. A statement like that does mean as much as it sounds.

I will break this list down into two sections. The first will be players who have hired an agent, meaning they are in. I will give brief descriptions of each prospect. The second list will be players who have declared, but can return to school at any time.

To be updated daily.


Updated: April 15, 2016. 1:00 PM EST

Hired an Agent - Officially In

SF/PF Ben Simmons, Fr, LSU
6'10, 225 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 19.2 ppg, 11.8 rpg, 4.8 apg
Projected Draft Range: Top 2

Ben Simmons was always an easy one and done. His team disappointed big time, failing to even reach the NCAA Tournament, but Simmons did little to hurt his draft stock. He showed Lamar Odom-like skills as a ball handler, slasher, scorer, rebounder and all around threat. His game is very NBA friendly. I think only Brandon Ingram could push him as the top overall pick.


SG/SF Brandon Ingram, Fr, Duke
6'9, 190 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 17.3 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.1 spg
Projected Draft Range: Top 2

Ben Simmons has gotten all the hype, but after a slow start to the season, Brandon Ingram has been toe to toe. Ingram is the prototypical 2016 NBA small forward. He is tall, lanky, athletic, a very good shooter and a strong defender. He can handle the ball, rebound, block shots and commit turnovers. It is a two man race between Ingram and Simmons for the first pick.


PG/SG Jamal Murray, Fr, Kentucky
6'5, 207 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 20.1 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 2.2 apg
Projected Draft Range: Top 5

Kentucky's big men recruits disappointed, but the back court of Tyler Ulis and freshman Jamal Murray was fantastic. Murray flawlessly transitioned to full time shooting guard, scoring 20 points per game and knocking down over three 3 point shots per game. Murray did not have the chance to showcase it since Ulis played virtually every minute of the season, but he can play point gaurd in a pinch. That versatility and shooting range will appeal greatly to teams who miss out on Ben Simmons and Brandon Ingram.


C Jakob Poeltl, So, Utah
7'0, 235 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 17.2 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 1.6 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Top 10

Jakob Poeltl flashed lottery potential as a freshman, but put it all together during his second year in Provo. Poeltl became a solid, consistent scorer who knocked down 65% of his shots on the year. He also is a proven rebounder and shot blocker. He needs to bulk up to avoid getting pushed around at the NBA level, but scouts are still on the lookout for big men who can control the paint offensively. Even as the league goes smaller, Poeltl will find a spot in the early to mid lottery.


PG/SG Kris Dunn, Jr, Providence
6'4, 220 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 16.4 ppg, 6.2 apg, 5.3 rpg
Projected draft range: Top 15

Kris Dunn is a four year junior who has already graduating, so as expected, he will move on to the next level. Dunn began the year on a tear and even made his way into the top five of a few mocks, but cooled down as the season went on. Dunn had a nice showing during the tournament, showing his ability to get to the rack and score tough buckets. His game should appeal to teams like the Kings or Bucks, who need some toughness and leadership from the position. Even though Dunn is not a great shooter, he should be a top 15 pick.


PF Henry Ellenson, Fr, Marquette
6'10, 245 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 17.0 ppg, 9.7 rpg, 1.5 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Top 15

Henry Ellenson was the highest recruit Marquette signed in years. He led the Eagles in points, rebounds and blocks, and will take his talents to the next level after only one season. Ellenson has a unique skill set. He is not overly athletic but has solid ball handling skills for a big man and offers some stretch four capabilities. Similar to David Lee, teams that can overlook his defensive shortcomings will land a good offensive player.


PF/C Skal Labissiere, Fr, Kentucky
6'11, 225 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 6.6 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 1.6 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Top 15

The second ranked recruit in the country, Skal Labissiere lost John Calipari's trust, and never seemed to regain it. A mega project, he showed flashes, including an 18 point, 9 rebound, 6 block performance against LSU in early March. This draft is short on impact talent, so Labissiere could still hear his name called in the late lottery. If Labissiere can be coached up, he offers difference making defensive ability.


PF/C Domantas Sabonis, So, Gonzaga
6'11, 240 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 17.6 ppg, 11.8 rpg, 0.9 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Mid First Round

Domantas Sabonis exploded as a sophomore, and capped it all off with a fantastic tournament run. He was a one man wrecking crew in a loss to Syracuse with 19 points, 17 rebounds and 5 blocks. Drafts are typically full of big men long on potential and short on production. Sabonis is the opposite. He might not ever become a legit starting power forward, but the chances of him becoming a solid rotation player are very strong.


PG Demetrius Jackson, Jr, Notre Dame
6'1, 198 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 15.8 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 3.8 apg
Projected Draft Range: Late lottery to late first round

Demetrius Jackson has improved greatly from year to year. As a lead guard playing 36 minutes per game, he managed to have more than a 2:1 assist to turnover ratio, which silenced some doubts that he was a scoring only point guard. Jackson might not have the size and speed to be a starting point guard, but he should make a very capable backup, with his ability to handle the ball and shoot the three.


SG Malik Beasley, Fr, Florida State
6'5, 190 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 15.6 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 1.5 apg
Projected Draft Range: Mid to late first round

Dwayne Bacon received all of the early hype, but Malik Beasley established himself as the best draft prospect on the Seminole roster. Beasley is the ideal NBA wing scorer. He is athletic, can finish in transition and knock down the open jumper. He should make a living parked at the three point line and driving to the rim. Players like that are always in high demand, and Beasley should be a first round pick.


PF Deyonta Davis, Fr, Michigan State
6'10, 240 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 7.5 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 1.9 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Mid to late first round

Deyonta Davis is the first Michigan State freshman to declare for the draft since Zach Randolph a decade and a half ago. Davis has serious lottery potential, but is extremely raw at this stage. At his best, he could be bulldozing scorer who can rebound and block shots. The team who drafts him will have to be patient, and properly develop him. With so many teams owning multiple first round picks, Davis should go in the first round.


C Stephen Zimmerman, Fr, UNLV
7'0, 240 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 10.5 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 2.0 bpg
Projected draft range: Mid to late first round

Stephen Zimmerman was a high recruit who chose to stay home in Las Vegas for school. He had a solid freshman season, averaging close to a double double with two blocks a night. He is a good athlete who can run the floor. The issue is he is not a very efficient scorer at this stage of his development, and is not yet ready to play major minutes at the NBA level. He is 7 foot, which is pretty much a guaranteed ticket to the first round, but he will have to be coached and developed into a serviceable rotation player.


PG Wade Baldwin IV, So, Vanderbilt
6'3, 194 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 14.1 ppg, 5.2 apg, 4.0 rpg
Projected draft range: Mid to late first round

The Vanderbilt Commodores had a disappointing season despite having a few NBA draft prospects on the roster. Wade Baldwin might max out as a backup combo guard, but he does have the potential to be a poor man's George Hill. He is a good shooter, strong scorer and decent ball handler. This draft is light on point guards, which should help him find a spot in the first round.


PF Marquise Chriss, Fr, Washington
6'9, 225 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 13.7 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 1.6 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Mid to late first round

Marquese Chriss could have used another year to develop his body and game, but he has the skills that teams are looking for in their power forwards. He has a good face up game with range out to 20 feet, can rebound on occasion and block shots. Chriss is still a project that will struggle to see the court early, but he could develop into a decent role player and should hear his name called in the teens or early 20's.


PF Thon Maker, Australia
7'1, 218 lbs
Projected Draft Range: Mid first to second round

What to make of Thon Maker? The ultimate wild card of all wild cards. He has the body of a teenage Kevin Garnett, the game of an And 1 Mixtape You Tube street baller, and skills that may or may not translate to the NBA. In summary, who on Earth knows. Some team with multiple first round picks could opt to gamble on the oozing potential, or he could find his way well into the second round.


PG Tyler Ulis, So, Kentucky
5'9, 160 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 17.3 ppg, 7.0 apg, 3.0 rpg
Projected Draft Range: Late first, early second round

The curious case of Tyler Ulis. You would think a player who played 37 minutes a game, had a 7:2 assist to turnover ratio, averaged 17 points per game and hit 34% of his three point shots would be a shoe in first rounder, right? Well. The NBA still is scared of players under 6 foot. Ask Isaiah Thomas if he deserved to be a first rounder. Someone in the late first round is going to get a real gamer who will successfully lead a second unit. It will be a shame if Ulis falls to the second round.


PG/SG Dejounte Murray, Fr, Washington
6'5, 170 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 16.1 ppg, 4.4 apg, 6.0 rpg
Projected Draft Range: Late first, early second round

Dejounte Murray was not an extremely high recruit, but he outplayed almost all freshman this past season. He reminds me of a Tony Wroten/Rodney Stuckey type. He can handle the ball but is not really a point guard. He could be valuable to the team as a scoring combo guard off the bench. If Murray can show he has real point guard skills he should crack the first round. If not, he looks like a second round guy to me.


SF DeAndre Bembry, Jr, St. Joseph's
6'6, 210 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 17.4 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 4.5 apg
Projected draft range: Late first, early second round

DeAndre Bembry did it all for St. Joseph's as he won Atlantic 10 Player of the Year honors. Bembry is a bit of a point forward. He takes very good care of the ball and can lead an offense on occasion. Two things could keep him out of the first round. He is not a good shooter or overly committed defender. Like I have said a hundred times, the 3 and D wing player is all the rage in the NBA right now.


PF/C Damian Jones, Jr, Vanderbilt
7'0, 240 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 13.9 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.6 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Late first, early second round

Looking at Damian Jones, he passes the eyeball test. Blessed with a 7 foot frame and a large wingspan, he has lottery potential. The problem is his game never really progressed during his three years at Vanderbilt. He is a good scorer, rebounder and shot blocker, but he tends to blend in and go with the flow, which probably means he will max out as a backup big man. Still, the fact that he is 7 foot and able to breathe on his own could make him a first round pick.


SG/SF Patrick McCaw, So, UNLV
6'7, 185 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 14.7 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 3.9 apg
Projected Draft Range: Late first, early second round

Patrick McCaw was a high recruit who had two successful years at UNLV. He is a slashing wing who can handle the ball as well. As with virtually all wing prospects, the question is whether he can consistently hit the three point shot. If so, a first round pick awaits.


SG/SF Wayne Selden, Jr, Kansas
6'5, 220 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 13.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.6 apg
Projected draft range: Second round

Top recruit Wayne Selden looked like a mega bust after his first two years at Kansas, but put together a very solid junior campaign, putting himself back on the NBA Draft map. Selden is a tough scorer and a solid defender. Unfortunately, he is not that athletic of a wing, or a fantastic jump shooter, two things that will probably limit his draft stock to the second round.


PG Anthony Barber, Jr, North Carolina State
6'2, 195 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 23.5 ppg, 4.5 apg, 4.6 rpg
Projected Draft Range: Second round

Anthony Barber exploded as a junior, turning into one of the best scorers in the country. With superstar prospect Dennis Smith Jr. heading to North Carolina State next year, Barber decided to move on. Unless a scoring point guard has great size or fantastic speed, it is hard for him to crack the first round. Barber should be drafted somewhere in the second round with a chance to stick in the league as a scoring backup.


PG Kahlil Felder, Jr, Oakland
5'9, 176 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 24.4 ppg, 9.3 apg, 4.3 rpg
Projected Draft Range: Second round

Perhaps no college basketball player put up better stats than Kahlil Felder. 24 points and 9 assists would be NBA All Star numbers. The problem is he is a 5'9 guard playing against small school competition. Those two hurdles will be tough to overcome. He is hyper athletic, and a tremendous shooter, which separates himself from some of the other small school do it all guards. He could stick in the league as a spark plug type.


PG Tim Quarterman, Jr, LSU
6'6, 190 lbs
2015-2016 Draft: 11.2 ppg, 3.6 apg, 4.6 rpg
Projected Draft Range: Second round

Tim Quarterman had a nice junior year. He took good care of the ball and still managed 3.6 assists per night despite sharing the rock with Ben Simmons and Antonio Blakeney. Scouts are always intrigued with 6'6 point guards, though they rarely work out. Quarterman is just an average athlete and shooter, which likely limits his draft range to the second round.


PF Robert Carter, Jr, Maryland
6'9, 235 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 12.3 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.3 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Late second to undrafted

Robert Carter has made a reputation as a banging big man who can rebound, play defense and even knock down the occasional three pointer. There is not much upside here but he could stick as a camp body somewhere who could eventually live off of 10 day contracts.


SG/SF Daniel Hamilton, So, Connecticut
6'7, 190 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 12.5 ppg, 8.9 rpg, 4.7 apg
Projected Draft Range: Late second to undrafted

Daniel Hamilton is one of four brothers to play Division I college basketball, so the talent and bloodlines are obviously there. Older brother Jordan was a former first round pick who did not make much of a dent in the NBA. Hamilton has the skills to help a team. He is a good ball handler and fantastic athlete. But he does not shoot the ball particularly well or play much defense, two traits that are musts with wing players. His career arc will likely include stops overseas and to the D League before he ultimately makes it to the NBA.


C Mamadou Ndiaye, Jr, UC Irvine
7'6, 290 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 12.4 ppg, 7.2 rpg, 2.5 bpg
Projected Draft Range: Late second to undrafted

NBA Draft fans have known the name Mamadou Ndiaye since he blocked 3 shots per game as a freshman. His game has developed slowly, but it is still clear to see he is a very tall person who has been forced to play basketball. Players like that just do not make it in the NBA, but he could still be drafted in the second round as the ultimate wild card project. After all, you can never teach 7'6.


PG Kareem Canty, Jr, Auburn
6'1, 195 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 18.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 3.0 apg
Projected Draft Range: Undrafted

Kareem Canty transfered from Marshall to Auburn. He put up great stats before leaving the program during the middle of the year. There have been hundreds of undersized scorers who just do not have that standout skill to make the NBA, and Canty is just that. He will not be drafted.


PF/C Stefan Jankovic, Jr, Hawaii
6'11, 235 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 15.6 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 1.2  bpg
Projected Draft Range: Undrafted

Stefan Jankovic does have some NBA quality skills. He can rebound and knock down the long range three. But he is simply not athletic enough to make an NBA roster. A nice overseas career awaits.


SF Brannen Greene, Jr, Kansas
6'7, 215 lbs
2015-2016 Stats: 5.4 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 0.8 apg
Projected Draft Range: Undrafted

Brannen Greene was a lightly used role player during his time in Kansas. There is a small chance he could carve out a role overseas, but his NBA chances are nill.



PF Dragan Bender, Croatia (Top 10)
SG/SF Timothe Luwawu, France (Late lottery to mid first round)
SG Furkan Korkmaz, Turkey (Late lottery to mid first round)
C Ante Zizic, Croatia (Late first to early second round)
C Ivica Zubac, Croatia (Late first to early second round)
PF/C Alpha Kaba, France (Second round)
PF/C Emircan Kosut, Turkey (Second round)
PF Marko Arapovic, Croatia (Late second round to undrafted)
SG Blaz Mesicek, Slovenia (Late second round to undrafted)
SF Rade Zagorac, Serbia (Late second round to undrafted)
PG Ognjen Jaramaz, Serbia (Undrafted)
C Jordan Shanko, Spain (Undrafted)


Testing the Waters

C Diamond Stone, Fr, Maryland (Late lottery, mid first round)
PF/C Skal Labissiere, Fr, Kentucky (Mid first round)
PF/C Chinanu Onuaku, So, Louisville (Late first, early second round)
PF Thon Maker, Australia (Late first, early second round)
PF Ben Bentil, So, Providence (Late first, early second round)
SG Isaiah Whitehead, So, Seton Hall (Late first, early second round)
PG/SG Isaiah Briscoe, Fr, Kentucky (Late first, early second round)
PG/SG Melo Trimble, So, Maryland (Late first, early second round)
PF Caleb Swanigan, Fr, Purdue (Second round)
PF Cheick Diallo, Fr, Kansas (Second round)
PF Marcus Lee, Jr, Kentucky (Second round)
PG/SG Malik Newman, Fr, Mississippi State (Second round)
SF James Webb, Jr, Boise State (Second round)
SF Jaron Blossomgame, Jr, Clemson (Second round)
C Isaac Humphries, Fr, Kentucky (Second round)
SG/SF Peter Jok, Jr, Iowa (Second round, undrafted)
SG/SF Trevon Bluiett, So, Xavier (Second round, undrafted)
C Amida Brimah, Jr, Connecticut (Second round, undrafted)
SG Antonio Blakeney, Fr, LSU (Second round, undrafted)
SF Troy Williams, Jr, Indiana (Second round, undrafted)
SG Josh Hart, Jr, Villanova (Second round, undrafted)
PF Abdul-Malik Abu, So, North Carolina State (Second round, undrafted)
PG Xavier Rathan-Meyes, So, Florida State (Second round, undrafted)
SF Vince Edwards, So, Purdue (Second round, undrafted)
PF/C Trevor Thompson, So, Ohio State (Undrafted)
PF Jalen Reynolds, Jr, Xavier (Undrafted)
SG Charles Matthews, Fr, Kentucky (Undrafted)
PG Jamal McMurray, Fr, South Florida (Undrafted)
PG/SG Rodney Purvis, Jr, Connecticut (Undrafted)
PG Maurice Watson Jr., Jr, Creighton (Undrafted)
PF Devin Williams, Jr, West Virginia (Undrafted)
PG Julian Jacobs, Jr, USC (Undrafted)
PF Derek Willis, Jr, Kentucky (Undrafted)
SG Que Johnson, Jr, Washington State (Undrafted)
PF Tony Anderson, Fr, SE Missouri State (Undrafted)
PG Makai Mason, So, Yale (Undrafted)
SF Jalen Moore, Jr, Utah State (Undrafted)

Officially Returning to School

PG Joel Berry, So, North Carolina
PG Bryant Crawford, Fr, Wake Forest
PG Devonte Graham, So, Kansas
PG Aaron Holiday, Fr, UCLA
PG Derryck Thornton, Fr, Duke
SG Grayson Allen, So, Duke
SG Aubrey Dawkins, So, Michigan
SG Tyler Dorsey, Fr, Oregon
SG Allonzo Trier, Fr, Arizona
SF Dwayne Bacon, Fr, Florida State
SF VJ Beachem, Jr, Notre Dame
SF Kyle Kuzma, So, Utah
SF Tyler Lydon, Fr, Syracuse
SF Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, So, Kansas
SF OG Anunoby, Fr, Indiana
SF Devin Robinson, So, Florida
SF Tyler Roberson, Jr, Syracuse
SF Dedric Lawson, Fr, Memphis
PF Chris Boucher, Jr, Oregon
PF Carlton Bragg, Fr, Kansas
PF Isaac Copeland, So, Georgetown
PF Moses Kingsley, Jr, Arkansas
PF Zach Smith, So, Texas Tech
PF Craig Victor, So, LSU
C John Egbunu, So, Florida
C Jessie Govan, Fr, Georgetown

Jonathan Carrano

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