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Isaiah Briscoe NBA Draft Roundtable and Predictions

What will/should Isaiah Briscoe do? We debate it.

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

With the 2016 NBA Draft withdrawal deadline almost here, we gathered our staff to debate and predict what Isaiah Briscoe will do.


Unlike Lee’s prospects unless he does a makeover, Briscoe is going to be a pro someday in my opinion. He doesn’t possess any off-the-chart characteristics, but he is a relentless competitor, has an excellent fundamental understanding of basketball and some serious skill at ball handling and passing. His shot needs work, but like Lee’s, it isn’t fundamentally broken, it just needs hours in the gym with a good shooting coach.

I think Briscoe could be a first-rounder if he returns, but he will probably be a second-rounder this year. The NBA drafts on potential, and nobody who has seen Briscoe play could doubt that with an improved jumper, he could be very good. And as we have seen, the NBA can do wonders for jump-shots. Guys who couldn’t hit the water from a leaky rowboat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean wind up being solid shooters with a few years of dedicated work in the Association.

No matter what, I expect him to eventually stick on a roster somewhere, because he can do the little things — pass, defend, and rebound — to get spot minutes. I think he’s going to be a good journeyman player for a fair number of years if he stays healthy.

As for what he'll do, like Lee, it’s another tough call, but for different reasons. Briscoe probably realizes that he has things to offer the NBA, but he has to weigh the value of trying to get from the second to the first round, and that is actually possible for him. But peer pressure will push him to leave, as will the possibility of injury. Calipari’s opinion will be a big influence on him. I would guess that he stays.

Now watch me be wrong on both counts. If you’re smart, you’ll pick against me.


In a league so dependent on scoring and perimeter shooting, Isaiah Briscoe just does not fit into the NBA's standard as a quality point guard anymore. Maybe 5-7 years ago his value would be tremendous, but without a polished offensive game,there isn't much room for success. Another year in college would do Briscoe a lot of good, rather than going straight to the league.

I believe Briscoe will return for his sophomore season, there are so many pros and very little cons with returning to school. We saw how good a sophomore year was for Tyler Ulis. The defense, leadership, and toughness could be absolutely vital for next year's team that's got a whole lotta scoring ability.


Briscoe is also not NBA-ready, but he could get there with another year at Kentucky. He has some tremendous basic skills, and I've seen mediocre shooters become good shooters. He's a bulldog competitor, of course, and a good defender. He seemed all right sacrificing his role last season (I think part of that was the close relationship he had had with Tyler Ulis). Would he be as all right with this new crop of guards, who seem to be super-talented and also seem to have their own good relationship? Maybe there's a place for Briscoe at the 2 or 3, a la James Young.

Prediction: Briscoe stays if Cal really wants him to.


As far as Briscoe, he needs to get his butt back to Lexington. His game is good, but we all know he needs to work on his shot. Who develops players better than Cal? If anyone can get him to the first round, even in a loaded draft class next year, Cal can. Come back, Briscoe!!


On one hand, Briscoe is far from being ready for the NBA, so it seems like coming back should be as easy as making a free throw...

On the other hand, I agree with Glenn in that Briscoe should become a pro someday, even if he isn't right now. The NBA is full of guys only making rosters because of their 'potential' and little else, so it's not crazy to think a team is willing to spend a pick in the 30s-40s on Briscoe.

In the end, I'm going to make my prediction based on something that neither I nor probably anyone outside of Briscoe's family knows: Did he get either a promise or enough assurance from multiple that he'll be drafted this year?

If he did, then I think he's gone. If he didn't, then he'll return. It's too much of a risk to leave college now if he's not confident a team will spend a draft pick on him, and he probably prefers it be in that 30-40 range.