Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Pros and Cons to DeAndre Daniels' Decision to Enter NBA Draft

There is a lot that had to go into DeAndre Daniels’ decision to put his name into the NBA draft but was it the right decision for him? It is an incredible gamble on his part. First off, it shows that he doesn’t truly have confidence that he could improve on this season and is grabbing an NBA opportunity just because it is there for the taking. There is no telling if this is a good or bad move until all the cards are on the table and when we all see where Daniels gets drafted. If he goes to a good team late or goes in the top-teens or low-twenties, then it is a great decision, but if he slips and gets mired on a bad team and has trouble developing, then it could be a costly gamble. Only time will tell, but there are certainly pros and cons to this decision.

Pros: He has an NBA game already from a deep range to post moves which will easily translate over to the next level. Many a NBA prospect has used a great NCAA tournament to springboard themselves up the draft board and DeAndre Daniels had a fantastic tournament. He’s projected as a late first or early second pick, which means that he has the opportunity to land on a really good franchise that has the luxury to put in the time to make sure that he progresses without throwing him to the wolves and hoping he can cut it. Coming back for your senior year isn’t a guarantee, just ask Marcus Smart. Things can go wrong, be it an injury or just a step back on the development, striking when the iron is hot is always a good move.

Cons: This is one of the strongest NBA drafts to come around in some time and there is a lot of depth that could possibly push Daniels back far enough that he will land on a bad team in the second round. He could possibly be losing millions of dollars on this gamble, because if he stuck around and continued his development that he has shown in each and every season then he could be a top ten pick next year instead of a twenty to thirty pick this year. In terms of money, that movement up the board is enormous. The biggest question for Daniels will be his size. He still needs to add twenty pounds to his frame to compete against the men in the NBA and he doesn’t have the bounce that can overcome his lack of size.

From a selfish fan perspective this seems like a bad move for Daniels. He has developed each and every year and there was no doubt that he would continue his uphill trajectory. The only thing that would bar his draft status from rising would be an injury, but which one of us would not take the guarantee of getting a chance at a dream job. He can now get paid and develop on a NBA team. Daniels upside is very alluring and a team will snag him up. The biggest obstacle for him at this point will be his workouts with teams. He will need to impress these NBA front offices with some stellar performances. If he does so, he has the opportunity to slide higher in this draft and anything lower than the 18th pick will be an improvement. No matter what happens, UConn fans have to be happy with Daniels because here was a kid that had little hype coming into his freshman year and through hard work and relentless progression, he developed a NBA game. That type of characteristics needs to be applauded and hopefully he lands in the right situation to continue his maturity.

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