Syracuse's McCullough to Declare for NBA Draft | Zagsblog
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Sunday / July 14.
  • Syracuse’s McCullough to Declare for NBA Draft

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    NCAA Basketball: Florida State at SyracuseINDIANAPOLIS — Syracuse freshman forward  Chris McCullough will declare for the NBA Draft, a source confirmed to SNY.tv.

    RealGM.com first reported the news Thursday morning.

    Evan Daniels of Scout.com also reported that McCullough had signed with agent Andy Miller.

    The 6-foot-10 New York City native tore his ACL in January and had been expected to return to Syracuse for his sophomore season.

    He was averaging 9.3 points and 6.9 rebounds at the time of the injury.

    McCullough is currently projected as the No. 21 pick in 2016 by DraftExpress.com.

    “He has some talent but is a total project,” one NBA scout told SNY.tv on Thursday. “His body as well as his overall game has a long ways to go to be able to compete at the NBA level.

    “He will be drafted on upside alone. Should have stayed in school. He’s a late-first-round pick at best. Would not be surprised if he slipped to the second round.”

    A second NBA scout said he wouldn’t be surprised to see McCullough in the NBA D-League after he recovers from his ACL injury.

    “If he’s not coming back until December, they’re going to put him in the D-League,” the second scout said. “That makes sense.”

    In January, Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.com compared McCullough’s situation to that of two other players with torn ACLs.

    Nerlens Noel and Spencer Dinwiddie were in similar situations tearing their ACLs mid-season, but regardless both decided to enter the draft,” Givony Tweeted.

    Syracuse also loses senior Rakeem Christmas, while wing B.J. Johnson and guard Ron Patterson are transferring.

    Despite penalties levied by the NCAA, the Orange have a four-man recruiting class featuring guards Malachi Richardson and Frank Howard and bigs Moustapha Diagne and Tyler Lydon.  They also have injured big man Dajuan Coleman coming back.

    They are also still in the mix for uncommitted 6-10 McDonald’s All-American Thomas Bryant, who is also considering Indiana, Missouri and Kentucky, although he said this week he hasn’t heard from Kentucky and Syracuse since January.

    Photo: USA Today Sports

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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