A Draft With No Future?

By Marcus Shockley

Arizona Wildcats’ Derrick Williams celebrates against the Duke Blue Devils during their NCAA West Regional college basketball game in Anaheim, California in this March 24, 2011 file photo. The Cleveland Cavaliers finally caught a break after a nightmare 2010-2011 season when they were awarded the number one pick in next month’s NBA draft on Tuesday. Cleveland will have the top overall choice for the first time since 2003, when they selected LeBron James, and are expected to choose Duke’s Kyrie Irving or Arizona’s Derrick Williams as the new face of their franchise. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/Files (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)


What do you take away from an NBA draft in a year where nobody expects games to be played?

It’s too bad for the players who are entering the draft with the hopes of achieving their dream of playing pro ball for the top league in the world, but the reality is that it’s a near-certainty that there won’t be much a season this year, if a season even occurs at all.

The business of the draft itself has chugged right along; the writers pontificate over who should go as a late lottery pick, and mock draft sites work their magic to try and predict which team will select a certain player. But after the confetti and fanfare, the hats and the handshakes with the commissioner, the cold truth is that it could be a while before we see any of these players play their rookie seasons.

How many players will bolt to play overseas to start earning a paycheck? Once a player has decided to stick it out and try the draft, he’s pretty much like the rest of society, which means he’s got to earn a living, somehow. It’s unlikely any of them are going to get the TV commentator jobs that many coaches land between gigs, or veterans slide into when they can no longer stick on a roster.

Personally, I’ve always thought that the draft itself was far too hyped, teams can get a great player from time to time but usually a great draft just means a chance to build around a player; even Micheal Jordan was a starting point, not the entire Bulls franchise when he was drafted out of North Carolina.

For the players who are in the draft, especially the college graduates, they must feel as though they’ve spent an eternity trying to get to their pro career only to have it pulled away from them just as they reach for it.

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