Marcus Smart, point guard from Oklahoma State announced yesterday that he will return to Oklahoma State for his sophomore season as reported by ESPN.com and it became official just a few moments ago. Smart’s was projected to be a top-five pick had he decided to enter the 2013 NBA Draft.
Smart’s decision has altered the entire landscape of the 2013 NBA Draft. This year’s draft was already lacking talent depth and now with Smart out, the talent pool of the draft becomes that much smaller.
Marcus Smart was not one of the Phoenix Suns potential draft targets because the point guard position is one position the Suns have solidified, however, with Smart off the board the competition for players like Otto Porter, Ben McLemore, and Victor Oladipo increases which makes life a bit tougher for the Suns because those guys are some of the Suns top targets in the draft.
Smart’s decision to return to school is a befuddling one. Smart was projected to be the second pick in this year’s draft, however had teams like the Orlando Magic or New Orleans Hornets won the lottery, Smart would have likely been the first player off the board because both teams are in a need for a point guard.
Compared to the 2014 NBA Draft, the 2013 NBA Draft simply doesn’t measure up; talent wise at least. Smart was all but a lock to be a top three pick this June which would likely not be the case in the 2014 NBA Draft.
“I am aware of how much money I’m giving up.” Said Smart.
North Carolina Tar Heels’ forward James Michael McAdoo was projected to a be top-ten pick in last year’s draft but he elected to return to UNC for his sophomore season. Unfortunately for McAdoo he had an absolutely miserable sophomore season and his draft stock has tanked to the bottom of the first-round which ultimately forced him to return to school for his junior year so that he can redeem himself next season.
Ultimately Smart’s decision to return to school wasn’t exactly a “Smart” One. His decision to return to school could very well backfire on him the way it has on McAdoo. However in this situation, the Suns playbook for draft day just got smaller as a result of Smart’s decision.