Wilson and Wagner projected late first round in several mocks.

Submitted by MichiganMan14 on April 5th, 2017 at 12:36 PM
There has been some movement in the stock of DJ and Moritz lately. I believe there is a few weeks left in the decision-making process but multiple mocks have DJ going to San Antonio with the 29th pick. Moritz has been seen as high as 25. This has obvious implications on next season. Losing both would simply be crippling without the addition of Bamba. I would think that both have lottery potential with a strong campaign next year so it will be interesting to see how this decision plays out. It's been eerily quiet on this front for a few weeks now. We should have answers in a few weeks.



April 5th, 2017 at 7:40 PM ^

The media constantly underrate Michigan as a team, but then they overrate players' draft positions as soon as they do anything at all.  Hopefully, both know they need another year of improvement much more than they need to read their press clippings.

And I still think the real threat for Wagner comes from Germany and not the NBA draft.


April 5th, 2017 at 12:43 PM ^

Both will declare, neither will retain an agent, and the decisions will occur near the end of May after the combine has been held and they've gone to some workouts with teams.

yossarians tree

April 5th, 2017 at 1:12 PM ^

Less worried about Wagner going. He seems to genuinely enjoy college life and the academics. Harder to read where Wilson's head might be at. They are both at least 3 years away from being useful to any NBA club, and if you slip out of the first round you get nothing guaranteed. At least one more year with Saunderson and Beilein would do wonders for the development of both.


April 5th, 2017 at 8:22 PM ^

with the new CBA all first rounders are getting a 50% raise. also, I think every second rounder that wasn't international has gotten at least one year guarantee for the first ten picks. most have option years for years two and three.

Lou MacAdoo

April 5th, 2017 at 1:31 PM ^

Yeah but that doesn't matter anymore in the NBA. It's not about these players coming in and contributing right away. I guess they just prefer that they own their rights and they can develop them on their own instead of leaving them in college. You know the place where basketball fans can actually watch them and cheer them on. I hate the NBA

Lou MacAdoo

April 5th, 2017 at 3:43 PM ^

Yep, and a couple more seasons in college would arguably be more beneficial to their carrers. It's hard to turn down that money though. I understand, but I just wish we could watch them play college for a couple years. It's so frustrating as a Michigan fan to see awesome talents like McGary leave after one year. 


April 5th, 2017 at 4:15 PM ^

any development happening during that 2-3 year rookie contract?  Those 82 games and unlimited practices and nearly unlimited resources to spend on shot coaches and psychologists and weight rooms and everything else?

The NBA developed almost everyone playing in it.  Very few of these one-and-done's are "ready" when they enter the leauge.  But if they aren't ready after 2-3 years of heavy development, they're gone for the next developmental project.  That's plenty of time to guage with near certainty whether someone has what it takes to be a top 300 basketball player in the world.

I Like Burgers

April 5th, 2017 at 4:23 PM ^

NBA teams don't practice as much as you think they do.  The travel schedule is pretty brutal, and any practices they do have are going to be spent working out kinks with the starters and main rotation players.  Developmental players will generally be off to the side working with one of the lower assistants.

So for the most part project players don't participate in practice much, and they certainly don't play in games much.  Take GRIII.  This is his third year in the NBA, and he's only now averaging 20min a game.  In three years in the NBA the minutes he's logged have been the equivalent of about 1.5 seasons of CBB -- and the bulk of that game this season.  Would he be more developed had he stayed and played a full season at Michigan?  Probably.

I Like Burgers

April 6th, 2017 at 10:59 AM ^

Teams skip practices a lot to save wear and tear on bodies.  And when they do have practice or shootarounds, its generally to prepare for specific games and situations.  So if you're a project player who isn't playing in games, or only averaging 5min a game you're not going to get a whole lot out of practice.  Because frankly, coaches have bigger things to worry about then preparing some guy who might contribute in 2-3 years.  Years that are generally irrelevant if you can't take care of winning in the immediate future.

Now, if you're a college player who is playing 32min a game, you're going to get a whole lot more out of practices and experience from playing meaningful minutes in games.

Number 7

April 5th, 2017 at 12:48 PM ^

Is it still the case that the first round = guaranteed money, while second rounders have to compete for a roster spot to make their payday?  It's a risky thing, then, to be slightly underdeveloped (physically) and on the cusp of the two rounds.  Both guys can move into lottery contention if they return.

Memo to the Spurs:  the guy you want is Walton, anyways.


[EDIT:  see this article for some year old stats on the first-vs-second disparity]


April 5th, 2017 at 1:13 PM ^

Practically speaking most guys selected in the 30s get their first two years guaranteed. Even at the minimum salary, that's approaching $2.2 million for guys drafted this June. Pick #30 will probably get $3 million guaranteed. Last season every non-international player drafted between 31-40 signed for at least 2 years guaranteed, and every player from 41-50 had at least one year guaranteed, with all but one getting multiple years guaranteed or a partial guarantee on year 2. Only two of the 14 signed players from 31-50 had under $1 million in guaranteed money.

Anyway, if they're picked in the early 2nd, they'll probably do just fine financially. The mid-to-late second is a different story, but the first 10-15 picks in the second round of this draft will be well-compensated and won't need to fight for a roster spot.

There's obviously a point to be made about not all draft classes being equal, but this year's class is seen to be at least as strong as last year's, so it would be expected they'll experience similar contract negotiations.


April 5th, 2017 at 1:38 PM ^

 First round means three years guaranteed money (on basically a fixed salary scale) with team options for the 4th and 5th years (and the possibility of a renegotiated extension in the 4th year). Second round basically just gives the drafting team a right of first refusal. Occasionally 2nd round guys will get a multi year deal but there's no guarantee.


April 5th, 2017 at 12:47 PM ^

Swanigan and Bridges will be enjoying their senior nights in a couple years. Phuck the nba. They want Beileins system more than anything but are too dumb to know it.

Leaders And Best

April 5th, 2017 at 2:22 PM ^

With the new early entry rules, any borderline draftable prospect should declare and work out at the Combine and team workouts to see how they stack up. Players can now enter the draft multiple times without penalty as long as they do not hire an agent.

This is going to become more commonplace, and people need to get used to this. Calipari actually recommends his entire team to do this.


April 5th, 2017 at 12:51 PM ^

I am not a big basketball guy yet I can see that Wagner is clearly not ready for the NBA. That Oregon game seemed pretty rough for him and I haven't seen much consistency.


April 5th, 2017 at 1:07 PM ^

This is the fallacy of NBA prospects. Only the very, very best step in as plus players in years 1-2 (think guys like Towns and Davis). Yet, a year of development with an NBA staff while playing with the pro rules and without the practice restrictions in the NCAA is invaluable.

Taking one of those mocks, consider DJ Wilson's potential if drafted by the Spurs? Sure he'd be a deep reserve and maybe spend some time on their D-League affiliate in Austin. But they'd make a player out of him and find a way to exploit his length, athleticism, and shooting touch. in a couple years.

I want them back and think there is some value in staying and getting a full season as a top option on a potentially elite college team, but I do understand if either bolts, particularly Wilson as he's already 21.


April 5th, 2017 at 1:30 PM ^

That makes sense and understand that there is value there as projects. It also seems like, at least in Wagner's case, he was thought to be a project before coming to Michigan and he has improved year over year and from the first half of the season to the second, so I think there is more room there for more growth.

Like you point out, if you go pro and get developed, you have time before you will enter the Lion's den but I see Wagner get tired very quickly and tend to get pushed around here and there. While I imagine the NBA teams will focus on physical development, I have rarely seen dramatic physical transformations like you see in college and I think another year of that would be a huge boost to his stock and ability to develop other parts of his game.

I know he won't be Cousins from the get go. I also see guys like Steven Adams and Cody Zeller struggle at first and can't help but wonder if another year would make that easier, especially if so much of Wagner's value is in upside rather than his current game.


April 5th, 2017 at 2:26 PM ^

The part about actual developmental rate I agree with. The reason why some players should stay back isn't really about development though, it's about gaurenteed money and perception when in the league(which leads to better contracts in the future). For example, lets say they are drafted late 20's they are gaurenteed to get a certain amount of money, however, if they drop just a few spots and are taken at 35 or so (which is a real possibility for a late 1st round projection player) then they have no gaurenteed money, are more likely to be cut by the team and bounce around. Their perception is now tarnished in the league and will get less opportunties. Now lets say this player stays for a year, develops (at the same rate as if he was in the NBA) and now has cemented himself as a better pick and he goes at 14. He now has a lot more gaurenteed money (3.5 mill over 2 years compared to less than a mill over 2 years), teams will be more willing to let him sit on the bench and develop, and the perception of his abilities is not decreased like in the previous scenario which can allow for better future contracts. There are a lot of very good reasons to stay for an extra year and both wilson and wagner fit this mold. It is not neccessarily that they will get bigger and develop in college and they can't in the NBA, but instead they can prove that they can improve, get better, and get bigger while in college, which the NBA can then evaluate and decide that they want them more than before. There is also a chance that you will drop stock, but in that case you are not really much worse off than if you dropped into early 2nd anyways. It's risk management, and if you aren't projected in the lottery or just outside the lottery, you typically should stay (obviously all scenarios are different though, but this does fit wilson and wagner for this year).