The Remains Of The Date

LOS ANGELES – The bottom continued to drop out of what was already a weak June 23 draft when Harrison Barnes announced Monday he would return to North Carolina for his sophomore season, the second top-five pick and fourth probable lottery choice to stay in school.

Barnes, along with Derrick Williams, would have been under consideration for the No. 1 pick if the team that wins the May 17 lottery is set at point guard and has no pressing need for Kyrie Irving. Instead, Barnes’ swerving season that began with a good chance at going first and detoured into a disappointing start before finally reclaiming his original promise, ends with a decision to remain a Tar Heel.

“As a team, we’re preparing for a special season,” he said in a statement released by the school. “My offseason plans are to diligently work on honing my basketball skills in all areas with one team-goal in mind – to bring the 2012 national championship home to UNC.”

John Henson, a possible lottery pick, had previously said he would return to North Carolina.

Barnes and Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger were both projected to be picked in the top five, and perhaps the top three. Perry Jones was headed for the top 10 before choosing to stay at Baylor another season. Henson was a fourth lottery candidate, creating the chance for several prospects who would have been destined for the late-teens to move into lottery money.

Underclassmen must declare for the draft by Sunday. They can withdraw by May 8 and retain college eligibility.

15 Comments

  1. moneyball says:

    I meant kemba beat him

  2. moneyball says:

    Kemba is wayyyyyyyy better than Knight. Matter of fact Kemba BET HIM TO GO TO THE NATIONAL Championship. I believe he will be a high scoring shooting gaurd. If the top 5pick skip him like a dummy, the pistions will drop rodney stuckey and get kemba at pick NO.6

  3. Count Vladimir says:

    the idiot who said education is overrated obviously did not finish college. or high school, even. what a moron!

  4. Kel says:

    Jimmer No. 1! Okay, I’m just kidding. No one should pick that kid. Derrick Williams, IMO, is best suited for the NBA. But I think this is a good thing. These kids should stay in school. Get an education.

  5. WHO CARES???? says:

    ITS THE PLAYOFFS!!!!!! NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE DRAFT RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!

  6. Let’s be real here, folks. Kemba Walker was a great, GREAT college player. But he is not cut out to be an NBA star. He’s a high-volume shooter who takes many ill-advised shots, most of which will never drop amongst the NBA’s big men. He’s a Junior, so he his potential for improvement has been significantly reduced, and overall I don’t think he is overly athletic. Brandon Knight, is quicker, can jump higher, and has better mobility than Walker. He reminds me a bit of Evan Turner: He is a great college player that will get drafted high, but will never be a great pro.

  7. Mason says:

    Kemba gonna go numba 1

  8. moneyball says:

    No one really cares about the draft except the losers like Cleveland, the wolves and the wizards.
    It’s the playoffs baby!

  9. moneyball says:

    J wall is not clutch either prix

  10. ORNELL says:

    Kemba Walker is No.1 boy.

  11. swaggman says:

    All I know is dat who ever get Kemba Walker is GONNA BE KILLIN’ IT!

  12. Jrok says:

    Derrick Williams should go number #1 .. The man is a beast !

  13. prix says:

    Wizards should choose wisely..they need a real go to guy for Wall..I wish they could be in the playoffs next year!

  14. ddish81 says:

    As a Cleveland fan, this news should not surprise me. We finally have a little sliver of hope that we could make out well this year in the draft, only to have 3 of the 5 top players remain in school. Come on guys, education is overrated!!!