UAB's Elijah Millsap Keeping His Name in the NBA Draft; Gordon Hayward, Daniel Orton, Eric Bledsoe All Likely As Well

I've decided to do a morning link dump to all of the draft-relevant articles I find each day on the internet.  Mostly to keep me informed, but you may as well get something out of it as well!

Decision to leave UAB wasn't easy for Elijah Millsap
UAB basketball standout Elijah Millsap will keep his name in the NBA Draft pool as he forgoes his final college season. Blazers head coach Mike Davis said he met with Millsap over the weekend and the 6-foot-6 guard made his decision following their meeting. "I’m hearing a lot of good things," Millsap said. "A lot of people said I’m good for the second round and with good workouts possibly be late first round."

I think it'd be difficult for Millsap (brother of Paul) to sneak into the first round, but anything is possible.

Hayward likely to remain in draft | IndyStar.com | The Indianapolis Star
Gordon Hayward plans to announce Friday whether he's headed to the NBA, and all signs point toward the Butler sophomore being in the pros next season. The Hayward family trimmed potential agents to four then recently cut it to a pair, who will be in town this week to be evaluated by the family. Hayward is going through NBA-style workouts with an NBA basketball at a facility with a nationally known draft preparation program.

It'd be pretty tough for his draft stock to get any higher, so why not?

Kentucky's Calipari expects Orton, Bledsoe to stay in draft - USATODAY.com
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky coach John Calipari says he would be "shocked" if freshmen Daniel Orton and Eric Bledsoe decide to return to school rather than enter the NBA draft

I think most people were going to be "shocked" if they returned, actually.

Sam Presti: Thunder is far from done | NewsOK.com
Do you agree with many analysts the No. 1 priority should be to add a big man?

"Everyone would love to add a player, or in the Lakers’ case two players, that have that size and length. But I really have to give a lot of credit to Nenad (Krstic), Serge (Ibaka) and Nick (Collison), the guys that manned that position for us, given the fact we improved dramatically defensively. We’re not a perfect picture, a finished product by any stretch. You won’t hear us say that. But by the same token, our guys have stuck to the system and competed and put us in position to consistently win games."

Owning the No. 21, No. 26, No. 32 and No. 51 picks, could you package some of those picks to move up in the draft?

"The draft is one of those things where you have a million things thrown around. We’ll certainly explore everything. That’s been the nature of how we’ve looked at things the past couple of years and will do it again this year. It’s an opportunity to add players. It’s kind of like in Monopoly, when you go past Go (you get $200). For us, we’ll try to find the right fit for our team and shift the odds so we can find someone who fits and can play."

Sam Presti knows how to talk to the media.  That is, he answered to questions without really giving us any answers.

Transcript: Kevin Pritchard's End of Year Comments - Blazersedge
Describe the draft class:

"I think it's pretty strong. I think there is going to be a lot of maneuvering. I think a lot of teams will be looking at free agency first before the draft. Which may throw a new loop. You guys know me, I'm a little bit of a contrarian, I try to go where others aren't. Maybe the draft will be a good place to be."

Blazers' GM Pritchard brings up a valid point - how many teams will actually be concentrating on the draft with the huge free agency boom?

Less Workouts - HoopsWorld
Word is there will be two group workouts this draft season – one in New Jersey and one in Minnesota. It's possible a third is scheduled, but as it stands now New Jersey and Minnesota are gearing up for as many as 40 potential prospects that will run in two-on-two and three-on-three situations.

I'm not big on these huge workouts, but apparently there are enough teams that think they only need a couple of looks at a guy to determine if he fits.  I guess it's not terrible, but it's not really ideal, either.

WVU's Bob Huggins has high praise for Da'Sean Butler - Canton, OH - CantonRep.com
"I can’t begin to tell you what a wonderful guy Da’Sean Butler is," Huggins said. "When people say ‘student-athletes,’ he’s exactly what a student-athlete ought to be."

"When I went out to Da’Sean, he’s saying, ‘Huggs, I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry. I played so bad. I’m sorry. I wanted to win this so bad for you,’ " Huggins said. "I said, ‘Man, we wouldn’t be here without you. You have nothing to feel sorry about. You should be very proud of what you’ve done.’ Here’s a guy laying there with a torn ACL, and he doesn’t say anything at all about his leg. He’s worried about not playing as well he wanted to play."

"I just told him, ‘I love you, man.’ "

I kind of have a soft spot for Butler.  This is why.

Ohio's Basset latest example knuckleheads rarely change face -  CBSSports.com
According to a police report, Bassett -- who has declared for the NBA Draft but not yet forfeited his amateur status -- was charged with assault after allegedly hitting a doorman at a bar. The doorman "received what appeared to be a broken nose," the report said. Ohio released a statement Sunday explaining that school officials are gathering details.

So Bassett's future remains in flux, and it's unclear whether he'll remain in the draft (despite a slim chance of being drafted) or return to school, or whether Ohio will even accept him back given the criminal charge he's now facing. We'll see.

Either way, at least we know this: Armon Bassett is a knucklehead.

Bassett is not a guy that CBS' Gary Parrish has a soft spot for.  With good reason, it seems (who likes people with dog breeds as their last name!?).

Seton Hall's Pope improving after collapse | SNY.tv: News
On Monday, 6-foot-8 Seton Hall sophomore forward Herb Pope lies in a bed at St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, N.J., after collapsing last Wednesday during a workout at the university's Recreation Center. Multiple reports over the weekend indicated Pope's condition was improving, and Robert Morris coach Mike Rice told the Beaver County Times last week that Pope was "in stable condition" after his "heart stopped" and he suffered "seizures, convulsions and was vomiting."

"If he wouldn't have been so close to personnel that knew how to handle the situation, he wouldn't have made it," Rice, who knows Pope, told the Times.

Pope currently still has his name in the draft, but I don't think it will stay that way for long.

Fredette tests NBA waters
In his official attempt to test the NBA waters, Glens Falls graduate Jimmer Fredette is heading to a few pre-draft workouts this week.

According to older brother, T.J., as of Friday, Fredette received four invites from NBA teams, though T.J. couldn't reveal which teams. According to T.J., Fredette has workouts scheduled for Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Fredette said from the beginning that he intends to return to BYU, unless he's guaranteed to go in the first round.

I don't think he's going to get that first round guarantee, but it's possible if one of those teams sees what they wanted to see.

Hokies' Delaney has NBA workouts this week - dailypress.com
Virginia Tech guard Malcolm Delaney is scheduled to audition for two NBA teams this week and isn’t likely to finalize his draft status until near Saturday’s deadline. That was the word Sunday night from Hokies coach Seth Greenberg.

He declared for the NBA draft last month but did not hire an agent, giving him until Saturday to withdraw and retain his final season of college eligibility.

Greenberg said he is unsure which pro teams are working out Delaney this week but believes Delaney’s decision hinges, in part, on the feedback he receives afterward.

At 6-foot-3, Delaney projects as an NBA point guard, but few, if any, mock drafts anticipate him being among the 60 players chosen.

Delaney is also one of those players that should probably return to college.

Draft: Henry, Motiejunas, Whiteside among mock candidates for Bucks' first rounder - Brew Hoop
BrewHoop breaks down the candidates the Milwaukee Bucks could be targeting.

Frank Madden gives a looksie at guys the Bucks are looking at.  He doesn't like my selection for the Bucks.

This is How You Remind Me, 2010 Edition - Sactown Royalty
Exhibit G compares draft situations from this year to previous drafts.

Last, but not least, Sactown Royalty's Exhibit G looks at the situations of some of the top prospects.  Not sure I agree with it, especially when he says Wesley Johnson is only getting the hype because Syracuse is in the heart of the East Coast Bias.

Comment if you decided to read through this.  If you didn't, I'll assume nobody cares and I'll just read them myself.

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