NBA Draft 2012: David Stern Shows Off His Lawyer Skills On "One-and-done"

Consider this video where NBA commissioner David Stern is asked about the NBA rule known as "one and done:"

There is absolutely nothing deliberately inaccurate in what Stern says. Yes, the rule is about age, not about years of college. But I think it's disingenuous for him to suggest that perhaps Euroleague and the NBADL are equally good options -- there is little doubt they are not, and the reasons have to do with coaching, physical training, television exposure to the NBA, and other development that colleges put into players that are pretty much up to the player or absent in the NBADL and Euroleague.

In the end, players get far more "bang" for their buck going to college, which is why most players choose this route. We know the Euroleague is a viable option, but 18-year olds are likely to be uncomfortable going to foreign lands and basically having to fend for themselves, and develop themselves. Understandably so.

To date, I don't recall any highly-touted players out of high school taking the NBADL route, although that is certainly a possibility and would doubtless work under the right circumstances. But universally, players seem to prefer the college route.

Stern is also right in that colleges make the choice to allow this, but I think that's a very facile statement. Consider this scenario: an Anthony Davis-like player prefers to go to school because a) he's a good student and he thinks one year of college has benefit, b) he gets to see his parents without having to fly overseas, and c) he will get the kind of help and support a young guy needs to avoid potential trouble, and d) he knows the NBA, as well as his family and friends, will get to see him play.

What are colleges going to do? What college is going to turn this kid down for one year rather than offer him a ride and hope he falls in love with education? Colleges don't really chose to do this, they defend themselves from each other by doing it. If North Carolina unilaterally disarmed and said it was no longer accepting "one and dones," UK or UofL or Duke surely would, and who would be the loser?

Yes, the press would write all sorts of nice things about UNC and beat up the others, but when it comes down to NCAA tournament wins, UNC would be at a big disadvantage. Let's face it - winning puts fans in the stands, and unilateral disarmament is going to have a detrimental result on the program no matter how many attaboys the papers and educational purists write.

Stern knows that this isn't a viable option, yet he tosses out this trope about colleges being willing participants. In a strict sense, I suppose they are, but only in the sense that if they don't all collectively agree not to bring in potential "one and dones," it amounts to a vast advantage for those who do. Also, how does one really know "one and done" intentions of a player at inception?

Anyway, it's up for discussion

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