In the first big shock of the NBA Draft season, Oklahoma State point guard Marcus Smart is reportedly preparing to announce he will return to college for his sophomore season.
Smart averaged 15.4 points and 5.8 assists per game on his way to winning Big 12 Player of the Year and the Wayman Tisdale Award given to the best freshman in the country. Smart is a big point guard who many saw as very capable NBA point guard prospect. He had very good size and helped carry an Oklahoma State team into the NCAA Tournament.
Many though questioned whether he could be an efficient enough distributor and pointed to his turnover numbers as a sign that he still needed some growing. Another year in college should provide that and he should remain a top prospect for a loaded 2014 Draft.
Smart was considered as someone the Magic should consider taking with their first round pick. A lot of people saw him as someone Jameer Nelson could mentor for a year before turning over the starting point guard role to the rookie as the team begins to really dig into its rebuild.
Like most prospects, you are free to disagree with that analysis. It is moot now with Smart heading back to school.
Orlando could receive the best lottery odds for the NBA Draft Lottery with a loss tonight to Miami and a Charlotte win over Cleveland. The Magic can receive no worse than the second best lottery odds which means they can receive no worse than the fifth pick in the draft.
The top prospects in this year's draft include Nerlens Noel from Kentucky, Ben McLemore of Kansas, Trey Burke of Michigan, Otto Porter of Georgetown and Victor Oladipo of Indiana.
Noel was on with Dan Patrick and the Dan Patrick Show this morning to discuss his process of returning from a torn ACL and the upcoming Draft — as well as the Boston Marathon tragedy as Noel is from the Boston area. Noel said he is ahead of schedule on his recovery.
The NBA Draft Lottery is on May 21.