Kansas junior guard Svi Mykhailiuk would be best advised to head “back to school,” according to multiple NBA executives speaking to ESPN.com’s Jeff Goodman at this week’s NBA Combine in Chicago.
“I still hold out hope on him (Mykhailiuk),” one NBA official told Goodman, who gathered information on the 14 college players invited to the Combine who have not yet signed with agents.
“He’s still really young and can be a catch-and-shoot guy. The question is whether he has a bigger role at Kansas next year than he did the past couple of years,” the NBA official added.
The 6-foot-8 Mykhailiuk, who turns 20 on June 10, has a draft range that falls between 45 and 60, which is mid- to late-second round, Goodman reported.
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Asked about Mykhailiuk this week, one NBA executive told The Star: “There’s been no buzz on him at this time. Not sure he will be drafted. I like the fact he’s got size and can shoot the ball.”
Mykhailiuk has a chance to put his skills on display during 5-on-5 Combine games and in agility drills Thursday and Friday at Quest Multisport in Chicago.
Players who have not signed with agents have until May 24 to remove their names from the draft pool if they elect to return to school.
Former Ottawa High player Semi Ojeleye, a 6-foot-7 junior forward at SMU, also has not signed with an agent and is at the Combine.
“I really like him and think he could sneak into the end of the first round,” one NBA executive told ESPN.com’s Goodman. “He could play a small-ball 4-man.”
Another said: “I don’t see a first-rounder, but others do. He’s already graduated and almost 23 years old. I think he should leave.”
Goodman listed Ojeleye’s range between No. 25 and 40 with the NBA’s verdict on Ojeleye: “Split decision.”
Former KU forward Perry Ellis measured 6-foot-8 with shoes, 221 pounds, with a 6-10 1/2 wingspan and 8-7 1/2 standing reach at the NBA Development League’s elite minicamp for NBA officials this week in Chicago.
“Those marks have remained remarkably steady since he was just 16, as Ellis is a prototypical early bloomer,” wrote Mike Schmitz of draftexpress.com. “With that said, Ellis was excellent on the floor all camp long, scoring at least 17 points in all four games (20 and 25 in games Tuesday) on efficient shooting.
“His footwork, ability to create with spin moves and straight line drives from the perimeter, touch around the rim and improved three-point shooting were evident in Chicago. Ellis is coming off of a fairly average rookie year with Greensboro (Swarm, NBADL) and certainly has room to improve defensively and as a facilitator, but he helped himself at the Elite Minicamp and his physical profile isn’t a deal-breaker.”
Ellis averaged 9.7 points and 4.7 rebounds in 50 games last season for the Swarm. He started 12 games and averaged 22.4 minutes per contest. Ellis hit 45.1 percent of his shots and 37.6 percent of his threes.
Former KU forward Cliff Alexander measured 6-8 1/2 in shoes, 248 pounds with a 7-3 1/2 wingspan and 9-1 standing reach, ranking second among all players in standing reach at the D-League minicamp.
“Measurements have never been Alexander’s problem, however, as he’ll have to play with a consistent motor and strong enough mentality to work his way back into the NBA. He posted the second-worst lane agility score at the camp, which doesn’t bode well for his switchability at the NBA level, but isn’t a deal breaker either,” wrote Schmitz of draftexpress.com.
Alexander averaged 15.8 points on 51.7 percent shooting and 8.9 rebounds a game in 40 games (13 starts) last season for both the Long Island (N.Y.) Nets and Erie (Pa.) BayHawks of the NBA D-League.
Andrew White not at Combine
Former KU guard Andrew White of Syracuse, who also attended Nebraska during his three-stop college career, was not invited to the NBA Combine. He averaged 18.5 points a game his senior season and hit 112 of 278 threes for 40.3 percent. He made 83.7 percent of his free throws at Syracuse.
“I think he’s probably undrafted, from everything that I’ve been told,” ESPN’s Goodman said in Tuesday’s pre-Combine conference call with media members. “Obviously can shoot the ball, has got good size. In addition to red flags defensively and putting the ball on the floor, you’ve also got the fact that he transferred three places and there is concern from NBA guys with that on a fringe guy. If he was that good, they wouldn’t care. But being a fringe guy that might or might not be drafted, I think teams are going to look at somebody like that and say, ‘Well, what’s this all about?’ ”
White has been working out with trainer Drew Hanlen in Raleigh, N.C., the last several weeks.
Hanlen told Syracuse.com that White is “one of the best, if not the best shooter in the draft. He is making 500 NBA three-point shots per day in Raleigh, and shooting those shots at a clip of 73 percent right now.
“We’re tightening his shooting mechanics up so he can make a variety of shots off the catch and off the dribble,” Hanlen added of White, who had a career-high 40 points against Georgia Tech last season. “We’re working on his defense. We’re tightening his handles, which involves change of speeds so he can attack in a variety of ways by using a variety of hesitations to keep defenders honest.”
Vitale gala is Friday
ESPN announcer Dick Vitale is hosting his 12th-annual cancer benefit Friday at the Ritz Carlton in Sarasota, Fla. It is a fundraiser for pediatric cancer research.
“I’m in the College Hall of Fame and the Naismith Hall of Fame and the Broadcasters Hall of Fame, but none of that matters compared to what my wife and I are trying to do here,” Vitale told USA Today. “Nothing matches the feeling of helping someone who is suffering.
“I want to raise $3 million this year,” Vitale added. “The event has been sold out for a while, but people can still donate by joining my team at dickvitaleonline.com. We raised $2.8 million at last year’s event and we have raised over $21 million overall.”
KU offers Greg Brown
KU has offered a scholarship to Greg Brown, a 6-7, 190-pound freshman power forward from Vandegrift High School in Austin, Texas, Rivals.com reports. He’s heard from several Texas schools, Cal and others at this early stage of his recruitment.