How Canadians Will Fare in the Upcoming 2020 NBA Draft
The 2020 NCAA basketball season is over as the COVID-19 pandemic forced the abrupt cancellation. It’s time to look forward to the upcoming NBA Draft in June and see how the Canadian talent will fare.
Canadians in the 2020 NBA Draft
Canadian basketball fans have been spoiled for nearly the past decade with countless stars being drafted into the NBA. This year, however, there is a chance that not one Canadian will be getting drafted.
“I don’t know if there is a star Canadian right now,” NBA writer for theScore John Chick says. “It’s weird after the run we’ve had.”
Fellow NBA writer from theScore, Chicco Nacion, agrees and thinks it’s very unlikely a Canadian gets drafted this year. Even if they have already declared for the draft.
“I’d be shocked if a Canadian was drafted this year,” Nacion says. “But it’s not for a lack of talent. (Marcus) Carr is testing the draft waters, but he’s expected to return to school.”
Minnesota’s Marcus Carr isn’t the only Canadian who still could get drafted, however.
“Delaware guard Nate Darling has done the same and would probably be best served returning for his senior year,” Nacion says. “Florida’s Andrew Nembhard and South Carolina’s AJ Lawson both tested the waters last season and were likely to be selected if they kept their names in the draft, yet neither really built on their solid freshman seasons.”
Improvements to be Made
There is potential in these players and more time developing in the NCAA could help their draft stocks for 2021. One player that could benefit from this is Florida guard Andrew Nembhard, according to Chick.
“He could still declare or test the draft again, but as Florida’s Point Guard, he was on a good team but needed to prove himself more,” Chick says. “Especially as a shooter.”
South Carolina’s A.J Lawson is another player who can use another season to work on his game after having a very good freshman season last year.
“His numbers were near identical to his freshman year,” Nacion says. “He struggled with consistency during his second season as a full-time starter and needs to be more efficient if he hopes to make the jump to the NBA.”
The Effect of the Cancellation
The biggest thing that these NCAA prospects could be missing out on is the NBA Combine. Even more so than the March Madness tournament.
“A solid NCAA Tournament run would’ve probably benefited Nembhard only,” Nacion says. “From a Canadian perspective, Oshae Brissett wasn’t even on most teams’ radars until his standout performance at last year’s combine ultimately led to an Exhibit 10 deal with the Toronto Raptors.”
Main Photo: Embed from Getty Images