So, the NCAA decided to cancel the men's and women's NCAA March Madness tournaments and the NBA has suspended their season for at least 30 days, how do these decisions affect the Draft and the players that could get drafted in the lottery?
Not getting a more in depth look at some of the top names during tournament time is going to be detrimental to the draft stock of plenty of players.
Some believe that the tournament won't affect anything, some believe it weighs heavily on how NBA ready you are. Honestly, it is probably somewhere in between both. The travel, the crowds, atmosphere and how bright a player shines under the lights of tourney time are all important. An 18-19 year old kid being taken out of their normal routines and being on the road for 3 weeks and the rigors of travel, practice, sleep and game time are all a glimpse into everyday NBA life and if a player can string together a few good games you can see their draft stock soar!
Playing against bigger and better competition for some of the smaller D-1 schools (I'm looking at you MAAC conference) can serve as a barometer of how players will fair in the league against other future pros and how they deal with being overmatched and how well they adjust and learn on the fly.
If/when the combine rolls around there are typically only 3 on 3 workouts being participated in and the higher draft picks will typically only conduct solo workouts for select teams. LaVar Ball has already stated that LaMelo has "proven enough" and likely will only workout for a select number of teams before the draft. With situations like this being more of the norm than an anomaly, March Madness is a key that every scout and NBA team holds very close to decide on fit for certain players on their draft boards.
This looks to be a very interesting summer and could see a lot of questionable fits on some top teams basing picks off of a relatively small sample size.
My hot take is that you should all look for some early round "busts" from this class in a few years. We can keep this post in mind for a while and happily revisit after the rookie deals are done to see a "where are they now" and who looks to have some longevity in the league.
Until then... Stay safe out there, Outlet Nation