The 2016 NBA Draft will be here soon, and now the NBA Draft Combine invites are going out to various prospects.
The deadline to declare for the draft came and went last week with Kentucky Wildcats guard Isaiah Briscoe still in the draft. That's because the hope was from Briscoe and head coach John Calipari that the freshman guard would be invited to the combine.
Well, that didn't exactly happen as Briscoe is on the list of alternates who could be invited later, according to Ben Roberts.
UK's Isaiah Briscoe is on the alternate list for the NBA Combine, according to a source.— Ben Roberts (@NextCats) April 30, 2016
Freshman guard Jamal Murray was invited to the combine, while senior forward Alex Poythress was on the alternate list.
Alex Poythress and Marcus Lee both on the alternate list for the NBA combine, a source close to the Kentucky program told ESPN.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) April 30, 2016
Briscoe excelled as a perimeter defender and rebounded very well for his position, but struggled with his jump-shooting and free-throw shooting. Briscoe made just five of 37 three-point attempts (13.5%) and was an abysmal 46% from the free-throw line.
Though Briscoe was projected as a first-round pick at the beginning of the season, he is now ranked as the 70-90 range by most draft services. But this is a players-first program, and Calipari wanted Briscoe to at least get invited to the combine and get feedback directly from scouts, coaches and executives about how he projects as an NBA prospect.
As for Murray, he led the Wildcats in scoring at 20.0 points per game this season, which is the highest individual scoring average at Kentucky in the Calipari era. With 720 points this season, he owns the school’s freshman single-season scoring record surpassing Brandon Knight (657 points in 2010-11). He's expected to be a top-10 pick and may go as high as No. 3.
Poythress wrapped up his UK career with 966 points, 597 rebounds and 77 blocks over his four-year career. He’s just the 12th player in program history to post 900 points, 500 rebounds and 70 blocks in a career.
In his final season at Kentucky, Poythress averaged 10.2 points and a team-high-tying 6.0 rebounds per game. He was also named to the SEC Academic Honor Rolly, the fourth consecutive year he's earned that honor. He probably won't get drafted, especially if he can't even get a combine invite.