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Could former California high school star be a G League candidate?
Last week the NBA G League introduced a new path for elite
basketball prospects that would
allow them to sign "select contracts" to play professionally right out of high school.
Currently, players must be at least 19-years-old and one year removed from high school to sign a NBA contract. See complete current rule
The select contracts allow top players at least 18 who are not interested in college basketball or playing overseas to stay in the United States and earn a salary while receiving professional coaching.
With this new breakthrough option comes more questions.
Here are seven questions high school coaches should ask about the select contracts to help advise their potential players. Two prominent high school coaches who regularly coach elite players offer their opinions below.
1. Which G League season will select contracts first be offered?
For the 2019-20 season. 2. How old do the players need to be?
They must turn 18 by Sept. 15 prior to the 2019-20 G League season. 3. How long are the contracts and for how much money?
Five months at $125,000. Interestingly, the average salary for current G League players are just $35,000. 4. Are there other other perks besides money and competing against other professionals?
According to G League President Malcolm Turner, the league will offer life-skill workshops, basketball workouts during the summer months, year-round education and a scholarship program for athletes who want to pursue higher education after their playing days. See the official release
for more. Players can claim money off their likeness such as jerseys and shoes.
5. Does entering into the contract eliminate NCAA playing eligibility?
Yes. It is intended for athletes interested in immediately beginning their professional careers. 6. Who will be evaluating these potential players and how will they be selected?
The G League plans to hire a program manager who will establish a group to identify eligible elite players. Those players will be selected in a lottery or draft by G League teams.
7. When will select contract players be eligible for the NBA?
After one season in the G League.
So what are the pros and cons of signing a select contract?
Two Top 10 high school coaches offer opposing views.
Kevin Boyle of preseason No. 1 Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)
is accustomed to handling elite prospects, having coached NBA stars such as Kyrie
Irving, Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and D'Angelo Russell.
he wasn't against the idea, Boyle echoed that he would not advise a Top
20 prospect to pursue the G League route in most cases.
biggest question is do the risks outweigh the rewards for entering the
G League out of high school to earn $125,000, when your draft stock may
take a significant hit," he said. "I believe players should go to college or attend
a post-graduate program. There is less risk of moving down in the eyes
of the NBA scouts and general managers.
you are a Top 20 kid and you go to the G League you might get exposed
by 26- or 27-year-old grown men who are hungry to prove themselves and
make an NBA roster. It's a lot easier to see players flaws against that
level of competition. Sometimes you even see players flaws being
exploited in college, that's why I would advise taking a year of
post-grad or attending college before entering the NBA for top 20
While some of the same sentiments were echoed by Sunrise Christian Academy (Bel Aire, Kan.)
coach Luke Barnwell regarding the physicality of the G League, he
offered a bit of a different perspective overall.
everyone's situation is different," Barnwell said. "To say I would take a stance either
way doesn't really make sense to me. You have to take it kid by kid and
determine what is the best path for him to be successful
kids aren't mature enough, but I think others are prepared for it. It
comes down to what is best for each player. I think today more than ever
there is more structure for kids to make those decisions. They receive
pretty accurate feedback and there is a lot of structure put into place
with what USA basketball is working on."