Wednesday, 17 October, 2018

Hamidou Diallo Withdraws From 2017 NBA Draft

Kentucky Wildcats guard Hamidou Diallo during practice the day before the first round of the 2017 NCAA Tournament    
   Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports Kentucky Wildcats guard Hamidou Diallo during practice the day before the first round of the 2017 NCAA Tournament Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Johnnie Parks | 26 May, 2017, 10:41

Diallo performed exceptionally well at the NBA Draft combine, intriguing many NBA scouts with his off-the-chart athleticism. Diallo says that it was his choice to stay off the floor in actual games.

"I'm really proud of Hami", Calipari said in a press release. "He took in all the information, asked a lot of questions, including questions to the National Basketball Association teams", Calipari said in a statement. I can't wait to get him on the court and have all of you fans see what I know. "He's a special player and a special person".

"I also want to thank the university for understanding how important this decision was to me".

CBS' Matt Norlander had this to say when discussing Diallo's decision-making process.

By choosing to return to Lexington, Diallo dodges becoming the rare none-and-done in the age of the NBA's age-minimum rule.

A five-star prospect in the 2017 class, Diallo graduated high school early and enrolled at Kentucky in January. In fact, hoops insider Adam Zagoria and The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski both reported Wednesday that Diallo didn't receive a first-round promise from a team drafting in the 20s-which sealed his decision to return to school.

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What does this mean for the Nets? With another star-studded Wildcats roster set for next year, Diallo should have plenty of opportunities to impressive.

Diallo had a chance to be a first-round pick next month because of his explosive first step to the basket, high-level motor and jaw-dropping physical tools. If he does succeed at Kentucky, he'll certainly be in the discussions as a top 10. Coach Cal and the staff have had my back throughout this entire journey.

Perhaps the Nets could stash players with both picks, having interest in worldwide prospects Rodions Kurucs, Isaiah Hartenstein and Anzejs Pasecniks, among others.

Had Diallo remained in the draft, he would have been the rare prospect to go straight from preps to pros. First-round draft picks sign guaranteed contracts.

For a few weeks, Kentucky couldn't be sure if Diallo would be part of that class or not. If I knew I was leaving after the semester, I would have played to help the team.

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