233 early-entry prospects declare for 2019 draft

The NBA informed teams Tuesday that 233 players have filed as early-entry candidates for the 2019 NBA draft, including 175 from the college ranks and a record 58 internationals.

The deadline for underclassmen and international players to submit paperwork to the league office making themselves eligible for the draft was Sunday night.

This number is down slightly from last year, when 236 early entrants declared — 181 from American colleges and postgraduate institutions plus 55 internationals. For the first time, NCAA players are allowed to hire certified agents to guide them through the draft process.

The NBA has also provided an additional platform for underclassmen to showcase themselves in front of teams with the newly revamped G League Elite Camp. This camp, held May 12-14 in Chicago just prior to the NBA draft combine May 15, will allow approximately 40 NCAA seniors and underclassmen to work out and scrimmage in front of scouts and executives, with the top performers advancing to join the ranks of the 60 players participating at the main combine.

On the international front, several agents told ESPN they put their clients’ names on the NBA draft early-entry list solely due to their desire to ensure they are able to participate in the NBA Global Camp, which debuted for the first time last year under the NBA’s umbrella. This year’s camp is tentatively slated to be held in Monaco from May 30 through June 2. This might partially account for the record number of internationals who made themselves eligible.

The NBA told agents last year after the release of the early-entry list that it would be inviting to the camp only players who had previously made themselves eligible for the NBA draft. While no official policy has been announced this year, and the camp itself is yet to be finalized, many agents preferred to err on the side of caution and make their players eligible to avoid being shut out of the prestigious platform.

The number of players testing the waters has steadily grown since the NCAA made sweeping changes to its early-entry rules prior to the 2016 draft, allowing players to enter the draft, attend the combine, work out for teams and withdraw their names within 10 days of the conclusion of the combine in late May. From 2009 to 2015, any player whose name appeared on the NBA draft early-entry list immediately became ineligible to return to college.

According to NCAA rules, players who wish to maintain their collegiate eligibility must withdraw from the draft by May 29 by informing both the NBA and their schools’ athletic directors. International players must withdraw from the draft by June 10 at 5 p.m. ET.

The NBA draft will be held June 20 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Here is the list of college players who have applied for early entry into the 2019 draft:

And here are the international players:

Additionally, the NBA sent teams a list of 16 players who are automatically eligible for the 2019 draft. These are international players (as defined in the collective bargaining agreement) who might have signed professional basketball contracts with teams in leagues other than the NBA prior to Jan. 1, 2019. If this information is correct, these players would also be eligible for selection in the 2019 NBA draft. Because this information has not been verified, though, teams will have to do their own due diligence (as with any other draft selection).

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