In perhaps the worst kept secret of the 2018 Wisconsin Badgers offseason, junior center Ethan Happ announced he would declare for the 2018 NBA Draft.
Wisconsin junior Ethan Happ has declared for the 2018 NBA Draft, but will not hire an agent. pic.twitter.com/J4YmtL0qdG
— Wisconsin Basketball (@BadgerMBB) April 3, 2018
Happ will take stock of where the NBA hire up’s and scouts believe his game is at, but will not hire an agent. That means he would have up until June 11 to either stay in the draft or come back to college basketball.
This was a known likelihood, as Happ let it be known he was thinking of the NBA Draft following the end of the Badgers season this year. He stated on March 3 that he would only be heading to the draft if he got a first-round grade and would be a first round selection.
So, will that actually happen and thus give the 2018-19 Badgers in to a very different outlook?
It is hard to see that happening though for a number of reasons. Chief amongst them is the fact that Happ has a limited offensive game. His post play is impeccable and his ball-handling is one of the best attributes to his game overall. However, he’s a bit of one-trick pony in that he needs to play around the rim to have any offensive impact. The lack of a jump shot of any kind certainly will be a big worry to NBA scouts.
Additionally, Happ isn’t a dominant shot-blocker on the defensive end, despite his ability to nearly average a double double in points and rebounds this past season. Happ’s lack of shot blocking ability will also be a strike against him.
Finally, Happ’s name barely appears on any mock draft lists and if they do he is a late second round selection right now.
While Happ clearly has NBA dreams, those dreams seem best served by getting exposed to the NBA scouts and getting their advice more than actually worrying about the upcoming draft as a realistic proposition.
Look for Happ to take in the scouting advice he gets, work on those aspects of his game and better himself and the Badgers for 2018-19 and see if that moves him in to the first round or not.
With the NBA allowing college players to declare but not hire an agent
Happ should get all the information he needs in Chicago, where the NBA Draft combine will commence on May 16-20. It should be a short time later that we get the final word that Happ will indeed remain in school.
Well, that is unless he finds a jump shot that hasn’t been on display for the past three years.