With the NBA combine officially coming to a close, Syracuse’s own Tyus Battle had a mixed bag of results and will now have a difficult decision to make. He measured well with an enviable 4 percent body fat, did well in some individual drills but didn’t showcase his full ability in 5-on-5 scrimmages as much on the first day as he did the second.
Of course, Battle underwent this process without hiring an agent so he reserves the right to return to Syracuse for his junior season should he so choose. Some are suggesting he do just just that. While it appears that Battle had some early consideration as a late first rounder, those pegging him within the first 30 picks of the draft are now few and far between.
As it stands currently, most are suggesting that Battle is a second-round pick. Much is made of being selected in the first round to grab a guaranteed contract, and lately we seem to espouse this belief that if a player is not a first round pick he should return to college to improve his draft stock, as if guys in the second round don’t end up getting guaranteed contracts.
The idea that second round picks don’t get guaranteed deals is a bit of a fallacy though. As Rob Dauster over at College Basketball Talk points out, almost 70 percent of college basketball players selected in the second round (in the last 6 years) received at least a one-year guaranteed contract in the NBA. It goes without saying, but that’s a fairly good percentage.
There’s always nuance to these sorts of decisions. Just because a kid isn’t pegged to be drafted doesn’t mean he should return to school. Some kids are just ready to start their professional careers. Others might just want to move on and not play college basketball, even if it is overseas. There’s a myriad of factors at play and a plethora of reasons as to why college players decide not to return to school.
In the case of Tyus, there’s thought that he could come back, improve his efficiency on a better Syracuse team and move up in what’s believed to be a weaker draft next year (which really feels like a throwaway line). That, and there’s been talk of him being a candidate for early graduation a la Rakeem Christmas.
Tyus has until May 30 to decide whether he’ll remain in the draft. Regardless if he comes back or not just wish him well and please, no name calling or labeling his decision a bad one should he depart. There’s just no need for that sort of behavior. Besides, Syracuse fans should want to him succeed in his professional career anyway. His success is our success.
Good luck moving forward, Tyus and if you do decide to come back Orange nation will welcome you with open arms.