Thursday, May 11, 2017

3 Bruins to Participate in NBA Draft Combine


Anigbogu, Leaf and Welsh set for the upcoming NBA Draft Combine in Chicago.

CHICAGO – Three UCLA men's basketball players – freshmen Ike Anigbogu and TJ Leaf and junior Thomas Welsh – are scheduled to participate in the annual NBA Draft Combine in Chicago this week. All three players were on the official 67-man attendee list released by the NBA last Friday.
UCLA is one of seven collegiate programs to have at least three players scheduled to participate in the upcoming combine. The six other colleges on that list include Kentucky (4), North Carolina (4), Oregon (4), Arizona (3), Duke (3) and Michigan (3).
Freshman guard Lonzo Ball was invited to the NBA Draft Combine but has opted not to participate.
The NBA Draft Combine is scheduled to take place from May 9-14 at the Quest Center in Chicago. ESPN2 will televise portions of this year's NBA Draft Combine on May 11-12, from 12 to 4 p.m. (PT).
The annual combine, a multi-day showcase, is the first step in the NBA Draft process for athletes aspiring to advance to the NBA. The invitation-only event features five-on-five games in addition to strength and agility drills in front of NBA personnel. Two years ago, UCLA's Kevon Looney and Norman Powell were invited to participate in the NBA Draft Combine.
Two of the three Bruins expected to participate in the upcoming NBA Draft Combine – Anigbogu and Leaf – have signed with an agent, forgoing their remaining collegiate eligibility.
NCAA rules allow underclassmen to "test the waters" by declaring for the NBA Draft, taking part in the combine and working out for individual teams. Players have until 10 days after the combine concludes to retain their collegiate eligibility, provided the individual does not hire an agent. Both Welsh and sophomore Aaron Holiday have declared for the NBA Draft but have not signed with an agent.
One of 10 players to secure All-Pac-12 first-team honors, Leaf averaged 16.3 points per game during his freshman season, ranking seventh in the league in scoring. Leaf, a 6-foot-10 forward from El Cajon, Calif., registered 8.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.1 blocks per game. He captured first-team USBWA All-District IX honors, was one of five freshmen on the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team and was one of five players, nationally, to be named a finalist for the Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award.
Anigbogu, a 6-foot-10 forward/center from Corona, Calif., averaged 4.7 points and 4.0 rebounds in 13.0 minutes per game during his freshman campaign. Anigbogu played in 29 of UCLA's 36 games and ranked second on the team in blocks per game (1.2 bpg, 35 blocks). He was fourth on the team in rebounds per game (4.0) and shot 56.4 percent from the field.
Welsh, a 7-foot center from Redondo Beach, Calif., averaged 10.8 points and a team-leading 8.7 rebounds per game in 2016-17. He also led the Bruins in blocks per game (1.3 bpg), totaling a team-best 43 blocks in 32 contests. Welsh ranked seventh in the Pac-12 in rebounding (8.7) and fifth in field goal percentage (58.5). He captured second-team Pac-12 All-Academic honors for the second consecutive year.
The NBA Draft will take place Thursday, June 22 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Since Steve Alford joined the Bruins' program as head coach prior to the 2013-14 season, UCLA has sent seven players to the NBA – five NBA Draft selections, including four first-rounders, and two non-drafted free agents. All four UCLA players in the Alford era who have chosen to declare for the NBA Draft as freshmen or sophomores have been selected in the first round.

No comments: