Myck Kabongo to the NBA Draft | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Wednesday / May 22.
  • Myck Kabongo to the NBA Draft

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    By JOSH NEWMAN
    Special to ZAGSBLOG

    Myck KabongoAs the list of underclassmen declaring for the NBA Draft continues to grow, one of the more intriguing names out there officially threw his hat in the ring on Friday morning.

    University of Texas sophomore point guard and Canadian sensation Myck Kabongo announced he will forego his final two seasons of eligibility. Currently projected as the No. 41 overall pick according to DraftExpress, Kabongo’s defection ends a 45-game tenure in Austin that showed great promise, but also brought its share of controversy.

    “He’s fast and physically-gifted, but I’m not sure that he really understands,” one veteran NBA scout told SNY.tv. “He’ll go in the second round.”

    A 6-foot-1 Toronto, Ontario native, Kabongo showed up at Texas with much fanfare as a consensus top-3 point guard in the Class of 2011. He averaged 9.6 points and and 5.2 assists as a freshman on his way to earning All-Big 12 Honorable Mention and Big 12 All-Rookie Team honors. The season was viewed by some as a disappointment thanks to all the fanfare coming in, but the skill set was there to stamp him almost immediately as an NBA prospect.

    Kabongo’s sophomore season was reduced to just the final 11 games of the season after the NCAA leveled him with a 23-game suspension, having found he received impermissable benefits, then lied about it. The original suspension was for one year, but an appeal from Texas got it reduced to 23 games on Dec. 21.

    In those 11 games, Kabongo averaged 14.6 points and 5.5 assists as the Longhorns went 6-5 as part of a 16-18 season. At the annual team banquet on Thursday night, he had been named its most valuable player and team captain for 2013-14.

    At the center of the NCAA investigation was Kabongo’s best friend and fellow Canadian, Tristan Thompson and his agent, Rich Paul, who counts LeBron James and Canadian San Antonio Spurs forward Cory Joseph among his clients.

    The NCAA concluded ‘Kabongo accepted airfare, personal training instruction and then provided false and misleading information during two separate interviews with university officials’ which led to the initial one-year suspension.

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