The minimum age for the NBA draft has been set at 19 since 2005. The change ended a long era of high school phenoms becoming eligible for registration, leading to a controversial “one-and-done” era in college basketball and, more recently, additional options for what After graduation for players including the NBA G League, outdoor tournaments and more.
There have been calls to change the minimum age to 18, and now Commissioner Adam Silver is on board, as the landscape has changed in high school and college basketball.
If the NBA or the National Basketball Association opts out of the league’s current collective bargaining agreement this winter, that could open the door for an age rule change next summer. Silver spoke about the possibility of this happening at meetings of the league’s board of governors during the current NBA Summer League.
“that it [based on] Bigger conversations than just going from 19 to 18, but I’m on record: When I balance all of these different considerations, I think that would be the right thing to do and I hope this is a change we’re making in this: via ESPN.
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According to reporter Tim Bontemps, a number of factors factored into Silver’s opinion, which shifted away from increasing the age limit to 20, including the initiation of the NIL and other “community changes,” and recommendations of an NCAA panel led by Condoleezza Rice.
“It might be in the best interest of all of our interests to start making an impact with these young players, especially because our sport is being recognized at such a young age,” Silver said, “and start working with them on developing them afterwards. Not only basketball skills but there is a focus. growing on their mental health and diet, and just helping them build character and all the important values in this sport.”
41 players have made the jump from high school to the NBA, starting with Daryl Dawkins and Bill Willoughby in 1975. While the roster includes a number of notable busts like Kwame Brown, it also includes Hall of Famers Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, and likely future Hall of Famers LeBron James and Dwight Howard, along with a number of All-Star and All-NBA players.
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