Yeah, being eye level with the rim is an NBA trait. [Bryan Fuller]
In a move that should come as little surprise, Charles Matthews announced today that he'll test the NBA Draft process without hiring an agent. This allows him, like Moe Wagner last year, to go through the combine and work out for teams while leaving open the door to a return. The press release from the program contains the key dates:
University of Michigan men's basketball junior Charles Matthews announced today (Friday, April 20) he will submit the proper paperwork and declare for the 2018 NBA Draft without hiring an agent allowing him to maintain his amateur status.
"After careful consideration with my parents and coaching staff, I am excited to announce that I will be declaring for the 2018 NBA Draft without hiring an agent," said Matthews. "I give thanks to the Lord for this amazing opportunity, as well as the entire University of Michigan for their support. Go Blue!"
"We have loved the initiative and maturity Charles has shown during this early phase of the testing the NBA Draft process," said U-M's David and Meredith Kaplan Men's Basketball Head Coach John Beilein. "We have been, and will continue, to work closely with Charles and his family to gain as much information as possible in the weeks ahead."
With Matthews entering his name for the NBA Draft, he makes himself eligible to be selected at the Thursday (June 21) draft at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Additionally, he will be able to start attending workouts scheduled by NBA teams starting Tuesday (April 24) and, if selected, he will be eligible for the NBA Draft Combine, Wednesday through Sunday (May 16-20) in Chicago.
Following the combine, Matthews will have 10 days to weigh his options and keep his name in or withdrawal, by Wednesday (May 30). Withdrawing his name from the draft will maintain his collegiate eligibility.
Matthews is a strong candidate, like Wagner before him, to get a feel for what he needs to improve upon before returning to college for at least one more season. He's mostly off this year's NBA Draft radar—he isn't on ESPN's top 100 and NBADraftNet projects him in the second round of the 2019 draft.
Barring the unexpected—and, yes, you can never rule that out with the NBA Draft—this should be a great opportunity for Matthews to work on his game, return to Michigan, and see the type of development that made Wagner's NBA decision a little easier this year. If the unexpected strikes, someone from the 2018 class—most likely Iggy Brazdeikis—gets thrust into a major role from the start. It'd be very nice to have Matthews' athleticism, finishing, rebounding, and defense on the squad so John Beilein can bring along the freshmen at his preferred pace.