2020 NBA Draft

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The short answer is - not necessarily, at his position. The template is there with guys who are great at rolling to the basket, sprint rim to rim, and can protect the rim defensively. Clint Capela is the mold. Willie Cauley Stein, Mitchell Robinson, Deandre Jordan, Dwight Howard. Adams, Thompson, Zubac etc. Anybody who tells you he can't fit in a modern NBA just simply isn't watching the NBA. Kofi fits - especially if he shoots free throws.

In regards to where he slots in the draft; who knows. But this idea that every center needs to be a euro big just simply isn't true. Same applies to Ayo as it relates to his "PG" skillset. So long as you can put the ball in the basket and defend your position, there's a place for you in the league. There's a list of comparisons for both.
Yup. An NBA exec last year was a color commentator for a scrimmage at the combine and was discussing this very topic. He said something along the lines of “If you’re not offensively skilled as a 5 in the NBA, you make your money by running the floor, rebounding & dunking everything in sight.” Kofi has the physical gifts. Also has good mechanics on his shot, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he can be a reliable mid-range shooter in a couple years.
 
Yup. An NBA exec last year was a color commentator for a scrimmage at the combine and was discussing this very topic. He said something along the lines of “If you’re not offensively skilled as a 5 in the NBA, you make your money by running the floor, rebounding & dunking everything in sight.” Kofi has the physical gifts. Also has good mechanics on his shot, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he can be a reliable mid-range shooter in a couple years.
I think Kofi will make the NBA and has the physical attributes to play there. He just needs to develop some and acquire a more aggressive mindset and attitude around the basket. He gets his shot blocked and moved a bit to often for a guy his size. He will learn to dominate and be more aggressive before he leaves and be a lottery pick in my opinion. If he gets a Chris Weber or Shaq I am going to dunk all my put backs he will be even more awesome and fun to watch!
 
Los Angeles
I think Kofi will make the NBA and has the physical attributes to play there. He just needs to develop some and acquire a more aggressive mindset and attitude around the basket. He gets his shot blocked and moved a bit to often for a guy his size. He will learn to dominate and be more aggressive before he leaves and be a lottery pick in my opinion. If he gets a Chris Weber or Shaq I am going to dunk all my put backs he will be even more awesome and fun to watch!
I'd love him to stay and dominate next year but if NBA execs think they can develop him on their watch, that's his best move. He's an older prospect for a freshman.
 
I'd love him to stay and dominate next year but if NBA execs think they can develop him on their watch, that's his best move. He's an older prospect for a freshman.
i disagree. Its about money. If Kofi is a late 1st or second round pick then he should stay if he can become a lottery pick and get a much much more lucrative and locked in deal. I love Kofi but i am not sure he would be a first round pick yet. If he stays and is a lottery pick he could make more in one year than he could in 3 or more. Plus if you are a lottery pick the teams will be much more focus on your development instead of sending you to the G league.
 
Los Angeles
i disagree. Its about money. If Kofi is a late 1st or second round pick then he should stay if he can become a lottery pick and get a much much more lucrative and locked in deal. I love Kofi but i am not sure he would be a first round pick yet. If he stays and is a lottery pick he could make more in one year than he could in 3 or more. Plus if you are a lottery pick the teams will be much more focus on your development instead of sending you to the G league.
And I'm saying that money is tied to him aging as a prospect. I think there's a decent chance that his best chance to cash in is going to be this offseason.
 
And I'm saying that money is tied to him aging as a prospect. I think there's a decent chance that his best chance to cash in is going to be this offseason.
https://heavy.com/sports/2019/06/nba-draft-salary-contract-picks-money-rookie/

I agree if you are saying work hard this off season and stay at Illinois. I think he should stay one or even two years if that's what it takes to be a top ten pick. If Kofi stays he could be among the top 10 drafted and i think that is possible. If so that is roughly between 8 and 4 million bucks outside the lottery it drops but if you are first round then you get about 1.5 as a minimum and 2 years guaranteed. Kofi can get to the lottery IMO and the pay off is worth it if he stays until he can get to that attainable level. If he is picked in the second round or later he may never be able to get that kind of cash. That's why when Myers went he did the right thing being a lottery pick and taking the big bucks when he could get em.


On a side note i hope Ayo keeps up the great play and plays himself into the first round to get the 2 years and great pay check. to set him up for years. Being in the first round is a big deal financially.
 
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What are the odds we have Kofi next year?

I know it's a good problem but holy hell we'll be never have another like him.
I do not think he is a top ten pick and likely may not be first round this year. If he stays and is a top ten pick in 2021 then he will likely make between 4 and 9 million a year for 2 years guaranteed.salaries keep going up. He would make more by staying at Illinois if he could achieve this and I think he can.
 
I do not think he is a top ten pick and likely may not be first round this year. If he stays and is a top ten pick in 2021 then he will likely make between 4 and 9 million a year for 2 years guaranteed.salaries keep going up. He would make more by staying at Illinois if he could achieve this and I think he can.
If he stays and becomes a lottery pick, then there's a lot to be gained, but the downside risk is really high. This year's draft is really weak whereas next year's draft is considered very strong at the moment, and if he stays he'll be a couple months away from 22 being judged next to 18-19 year olds. There would either need to be very low odds he's drafted in the first round/early second this year, or very high confidence that he can dramatically improve his offensive game and consistently stretch his game to the 3 pt line.

Of note: a lot of players prioritize getting to the league ASAP not to make money immediately (obviously that's big too), but to be able to get past their rookie contract sooner and make the big bucks on later deals. The longer you wait, the less time in your playing career remains for multiple potential big contracts.
 
If he stays and becomes a lottery pick, then there's a lot to be gained, but the downside risk is really high. This year's draft is really weak whereas next year's draft is considered very strong at the moment, and if he stays he'll be a couple months away from 22 being judged next to 18-19 year olds. There would either need to be very low odds he's drafted in the first round/early second this year, or very high confidence that he can dramatically improve his offensive game and consistently stretch his game to the 3 pt line.

Of note: a lot of players prioritize getting to the league ASAP not to make money immediately (obviously that's big too), but to be able to get past their rookie contract sooner and make the big bucks on later deals. The longer you wait, the less time in your playing career remains for multiple potential big contracts.
Those are valid points but it doesnt really matter if he is not ready to make an NBA roster much less play. There are some good big men this year in college and who knows around the world. I am not sure were Kofi ranks with those guys. Wiseman, Oturu, Garza, KUs big, Wesson, and others. I am an avid Illini Fan all my life and i think he can make it but I dont think he should go regardless of age if he isnt firmly in the first round. That is ere the money is and two years pay. I posted this early and I personally feel he needs at least one year. He is playing well but is getting his shot blocked and rushed at times in every game. He needs more experience big time because the NBA is a whole new level and he needs to get a different mentality to be ready for those guys imo. Here is a link i posted earlier that breaks down salaries for the draft and i found it interesting.

https://heavy.com/sports/2019/06/nba-draft-salary-contract-picks-money-rookie/
 
Classic example of a kid who should have stayed in school is Leron Black. He has been drifting around in Europe & isnt even starting for the team he is on now. Cant find his salary but would have had a big senior year for the illini. I cant help but think he wouldve been drafted in the first 2 rounds after that.
 
Those are valid points but it doesnt really matter if he is not ready to make an NBA roster much less play. There are some good big men this year in college and who knows around the world. I am not sure were Kofi ranks with those guys. Wiseman, Oturu, Garza, KUs big, Wesson, and others. I am an avid Illini Fan all my life and i think he can make it but I dont think he should go regardless of age if he isnt firmly in the first round. That is ere the money is and two years pay. I posted this early and I personally feel he needs at least one year. He is playing well but is getting his shot blocked and rushed at times in every game. He needs more experience big time because the NBA is a whole new level and he needs to get a different mentality to be ready for those guys imo. Here is a link i posted earlier that breaks down salaries for the draft and i found it interesting.

https://heavy.com/sports/2019/06/nba-draft-salary-contract-picks-money-rookie/
Dude, you are all over this thread and your opinions are just poor to me.

Kofi does not need to develop this mysterious mentality you speak of. He came to Illinois with a little bit of a soft body and has absolutely put in the work and transformed himself into a 7 time B1G Freshman of the Week. Do you understand how special that is? His work ethic and incredible progress in such a short amount of time show he already has the mentality of a pro. What he needs more of, as you correctly mentioned, is experience. He has only played organized basketball for 5 years. Dude has barely come into himself as a basketball player and put up 22pts & 15 rebs against Purdue. That's insane.

Most of the guys you mentioned as comparable big men are of little to no consequence when it comes to the NBA Draft. Wiseman and Oturu will be highly coveted but he's also going up against Vernon Carey of Duke, Zeke Nnaji of Arizona, Isiah Stewart of Washington, Onyeka Okongwu of USC, N'Faly Dante of Oregon, Oscar Tshiebwe of West Virginia, Filip Petrusev of Gonzaga. These are all promising freshman bigs he has to compete with for draft spots in a game where perimeter players are taking over.

For 1st round draft picks, the first two years of their contract are guaranteed but they all have two-year team options that are almost always picked up unless that player has really busted or has legal issues. You can have your opinion as an avid Illinois fan but if you have a first-round promise and even if you get picked #30, you'd be turning down a guaranteed $3.2 million to come back to school. You should think about it like that instead of like a homer to your favorite school. Yes, he stands to make a lot more if he comes back and improves his draft position but what if he suffers a terrible injury? Kofi is currently 20 years old which is not young by freshman standards. James Wiseman is just about to turn 19. Kofi is 19 days younger than a sophomore Daniel Oturu. His time may be now to jump to the league.
 
For 1st round draft picks, the first two years of their contract are guaranteed but they all have two-year team options that are almost always picked up unless that player has really busted or has legal issues. You can have your opinion as an avid Illinois fan but if you have a first-round promise and even if you get picked #30, you'd be turning down a guaranteed $3.2 million to come back to school. You should think about it like that instead of like a homer to your favorite school. Yes, he stands to make a lot more if he comes back and improves his draft position but what if he suffers a terrible injury? Kofi is currently 20 years old which is not young by freshman standards. James Wiseman is just about to turn 19. Kofi is 19 days younger than a sophomore Daniel Oturu. His time may be now to jump to the league.
I cannot speak for Rivercitychief, but I absolutely think about it like a homer for Illinois. I want what is best for the team, and that is that Kofi stays at Illinois. I am not smart enough to know who will be drafted when, but I am smart enough to know we'll be a better team if he stays. I will wish him well when he leaves, but I don't watch the NBA and I won't watch Kofi, either.
 
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Dude, you are all over this thread and your opinions are just poor to me.

Kofi does not need to develop this mysterious mentality you speak of. He came to Illinois with a little bit of a soft body and has absolutely put in the work and transformed himself into a 7 time B1G Freshman of the Week. Do you understand how special that is? His work ethic and incredible progress in such a short amount of time show he already has the mentality of a pro. What he needs more of, as you correctly mentioned, is experience. He has only played organized basketball for 5 years. Dude has barely come into himself as a basketball player and put up 22pts & 15 rebs against Purdue. That's insane.

Most of the guys you mentioned as comparable big men are of little to no consequence when it comes to the NBA Draft. Wiseman and Oturu will be highly coveted but he's also going up against Vernon Carey of Duke, Zeke Nnaji of Arizona, Isiah Stewart of Washington, Onyeka Okongwu of USC, N'Faly Dante of Oregon, Oscar Tshiebwe of West Virginia, Filip Petrusev of Gonzaga. These are all promising freshman bigs he has to compete with for draft spots in a game where perimeter players are taking over.

For 1st round draft picks, the first two years of their contract are guaranteed but they all have two-year team options that are almost always picked up unless that player has really busted or has legal issues. You can have your opinion as an avid Illinois fan but if you have a first-round promise and even if you get picked #30, you'd be turning down a guaranteed $3.2 million to come back to school. You should think about it like that instead of like a homer to your favorite school. Yes, he stands to make a lot more if he comes back and improves his draft position but what if he suffers a terrible injury? Kofi is currently 20 years old which is not young by freshman standards. James Wiseman is just about to turn 19. Kofi is 19 days younger than a sophomore Daniel Oturu. His time may be now to jump to the league.
Kofi would be a fool to go out for the draft right now. Revisit if he averages 20/10 the rest of the way out.
 
I cannot speak for Rivercitychief, but I absolutely think about it like a homer for Illinois. I want what is best for the team, and that is that Kofi stays at Illinois. I am not smart enough to know who will be drafted when, but I am smart enough to know we'll be a better team if he stays. I will wish him well when he leaves, but I don't watch the NBA and I won't watch Kofi, either.
Well, that's just sad that you wouldn't support one of our own as he pursues a meaningful career.
 
Well, that's just sad that you wouldn't support one of our own as he pursues a meaningful career.
Didn't say I won't support him. I said I won't watch him. I don't watch the NBA, just like I don't watch almost all professional sports other than soccer.

I am pretty sure he will decide what is best for himself no matter what I say on a fan board.
 
Dude, you are all over this thread and your opinions are just poor to me.

Kofi does not need to develop this mysterious mentality you speak of. He came to Illinois with a little bit of a soft body and has absolutely put in the work and transformed himself into a 7 time B1G Freshman of the Week. Do you understand how special that is? His work ethic and incredible progress in such a short amount of time show he already has the mentality of a pro. What he needs more of, as you correctly mentioned, is experience. He has only played organized basketball for 5 years. Dude has barely come into himself as a basketball player and put up 22pts & 15 rebs against Purdue. That's insane.

Most of the guys you mentioned as comparable big men are of little to no consequence when it comes to the NBA Draft. Wiseman and Oturu will be highly coveted but he's also going up against Vernon Carey of Duke, Zeke Nnaji of Arizona, Isiah Stewart of Washington, Onyeka Okongwu of USC, N'Faly Dante of Oregon, Oscar Tshiebwe of West Virginia, Filip Petrusev of Gonzaga. These are all promising freshman bigs he has to compete with for draft spots in a game where perimeter players are taking over.

For 1st round draft picks, the first two years of their contract are guaranteed but they all have two-year team options that are almost always picked up unless that player has really busted or has legal issues. You can have your opinion as an avid Illinois fan but if you have a first-round promise and even if you get picked #30, you'd be turning down a guaranteed $3.2 million to come back to school. You should think about it like that instead of like a homer to your favorite school. Yes, he stands to make a lot more if he comes back and improves his draft position but what if he suffers a terrible injury? Kofi is currently 20 years old which is not young by freshman standards. James Wiseman is just about to turn 19. Kofi is 19 days younger than a sophomore Daniel Oturu. His time may be now to jump to the league.
I think BU clearly disagrees with you. He has state repeatedly that Kofi needs to develop a toughness and an attitude to play like a big man. He needs this to be great. He does not do that. He is finally showing some of that.
As far as the draft what you saidis basically what i said Yeller . You t hink he is ready now and i dont. . I said he should only go pro if he is firmly in the first round. Do you think that he is? i do not think that he is but he will certainly put his name in to be evaluated and if he is certain he is in the then he should go. I think he is not but could be a lottery pick or a firmly in the first round after a year or even two. My thoughts are not all over the place or am i being a homer. I was all for Myers going pro but Kofi is not in that position yet. The two year commitment from teams by being a first round pick is a big deal. Clearly you feel that he is in the first round that is were we differ. Being freshman of the week 7x is cool, or All B10, but that doesnt equate into a long term NBA player anymore the all time scorer for the Illini does. I think Kofis skills can transfer to the league with some work and confidence to be in the first round and that is why i think he should come back not because i am a homer.
 
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You should try thinking about what is best for the program, which is getting as many guys to the league as we can.
I confess I really don't know how to think about that. The program seems to be on a decided upswing right now, without have sent many players to the league. I do know how what I think is best for the current team, and that is for good players to stay. I don't think the quality of the college game in general benefits from having a lot of one and dones.

I also think there is value in a degree from a good school, but that is probably getting a little off track.
 
The Transfer Portal
The program seems to be on a decided upswing right now, without have sent many players to the league.
1) this is a lot of fun but let's maybe win a tournament game before declaring us to be on the decided upswing
2) the two guys most responsible for where this year's team currently finds itself - Ayo and Kofi - are NBA-caliber talent who chose us despite us being in the worst stretch of Illinois basketball in the modern era. If our strategy is to continue finding guys from Chicago who are exceptionally interested in resurrecting a program and underrated guys that are connected to Orlando Antigua, it's probably going to be harder to sustain success than if our strategy is to find guys who want to make millions of dollars and see other players using Illinois as a springboard to do that.
 
Dude, you are all over this thread and your opinions are just poor to me.

Kofi does not need to develop this mysterious mentality you speak of. He came to Illinois with a little bit of a soft body and has absolutely put in the work and transformed himself into a 7 time B1G Freshman of the Week. Do you understand how special that is? His work ethic and incredible progress in such a short amount of time show he already has the mentality of a pro. What he needs more of, as you correctly mentioned, is experience. He has only played organized basketball for 5 years. Dude has barely come into himself as a basketball player and put up 22pts & 15 rebs against Purdue. That's insane.

Most of the guys you mentioned as comparable big men are of little to no consequence when it comes to the NBA Draft. Wiseman and Oturu will be highly coveted but he's also going up against Vernon Carey of Duke, Zeke Nnaji of Arizona, Isiah Stewart of Washington, Onyeka Okongwu of USC, N'Faly Dante of Oregon, Oscar Tshiebwe of West Virginia, Filip Petrusev of Gonzaga. These are all promising freshman bigs he has to compete with for draft spots in a game where perimeter players are taking over.

For 1st round draft picks, the first two years of their contract are guaranteed but they all have two-year team options that are almost always picked up unless that player has really busted or has legal issues. You can have your opinion as an avid Illinois fan but if you have a first-round promise and even if you get picked #30, you'd be turning down a guaranteed $3.2 million to come back to school. You should think about it like that instead of like a homer to your favorite school. Yes, he stands to make a lot more if he comes back and improves his draft position but what if he suffers a terrible injury? Kofi is currently 20 years old which is not young by freshman standards. James Wiseman is just about to turn 19. Kofi is 19 days younger than a sophomore Daniel Oturu. His time may be now to jump to the league.
Also if Kofi is told he may make the first round but may not but if he goes back to college and is willing to gamble on himself and his work ethic, ability to improve his confidence and abilities he could think yes i will turn down 3.2 million move way up and possibly be in the lottery and make up to 6 times that amount in two years. Players have done that often when you could turn pro from high school and still do choose to stay in school to move up in the draft and the first round. It doesnt always work out for them but it could. I think that it would because i think Kofi can be great with more work in college and get paid a lot more out of the gate.
 
1) this is a lot of fun but let's maybe win a tournament game before declaring us to be on the decided upswing
2) the two guys most responsible for where this year's team currently finds itself - Ayo and Kofi - are NBA-caliber talent who chose us despite us being in the worst stretch of Illinois basketball in the modern era. If our strategy is to continue finding guys from Chicago who are exceptionally interested in resurrecting a program and underrated guys that are connected to Orlando Antigua, it's probably going to be harder to sustain success than if our strategy is to find guys who want to make millions of dollars and see other players using Illinois as a springboard to do that.
1) Do you really not think we are on the upswing? I get the point on the second argument, but not this. This is the best and most exciting Illinois basketball has been in a long time.
2) I am content to let the coaching staff decide on the best recruiting strategy. However, very few schools (Duke and Kentucky are the only ones I can think of) have been exceptionally successful with the "let's recruit one and dones" strategy. What did Ben Simmons do for LSU, either by way of results or by way of recruiting?
 
Chicago, IL
1) Do you really not think we are on the upswing? I get the point on the second argument, but not this. This is the best and most exciting Illinois basketball has been in a long time.
2) I am content to let the coaching staff decide on the best recruiting strategy. However, very few schools (Duke and Kentucky are the only ones I can think of) have been exceptionally successful with the "let's recruit one and dones" strategy. What did Ben Simmons do for LSU, either by way of results or by way of recruiting?
There was no mention of one-and-dones. Just getting guys to the NBA. If they get good feedback from scouts and decide to jump, whether after 1, 2, or 3 years it doesn't matter. That's still an Illinois player doing well in the NBA. It gives our coaches credibility when they sit in front of a 4- or 5-star recruit and say, "We can get you to the League."

Right now we're selling the dream of being that kind of program. I think signs are pointing up, but we'd need to see sustained success with both our record and recruiting to really be able to say we are that program.
 

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There was no mention of one-and-dones. Just getting guys to the NBA. If they get good feedback from scouts and decide to jump, whether after 1, 2, or 3 years it doesn't matter. That's still an Illinois player doing well in the NBA. It gives our coaches credibility when they sit in front of a 4- or 5-star recruit and say, "We can get you to the League."

Right now we're selling the dream of being that kind of program. I think signs are pointing up, but we'd need to see sustained success with both our record and recruiting to really be able to say we are that program.
While this is seemingly stating the obvious, that is not the only path to recruiting and/or on-court success. Wisconsin, Iowa, and Purdue have all been significantly more successful than us over the past 15 years without getting a ton of guys to the league. Of course, so have Michigan State, Ohio State, and Michigan and they have all had a lot of drafted players.

It all comes down to what Kofi wants. Travis Etienne was a top 5 RB and chose to return for his senior season at Clemson. I know that's a one-off, cherry-picked example but maybe Kofi is enjoying his time on a college campus and that combined with the possibility of improving his draft stock would keep him in Champaign for another season.

No matter what anyone on this board says or sees through their orange-colored glasses, Kofi is no where near a 1st round pick right now according to people who do this for a living. Can he get there? Sure, but the Michigan games shows he has a pretty long way to go and that's okay too.
 
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