News broke from Bleacher Report Monday morning that 7’0″ five-star high school phenom Thon Maker has declared for the 2016 NBA Draft.
7-foot power forward Thon Maker plans to skip college and declare for the 2016 NBA draft. https://t.co/SJZElPc3eC
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 4, 2016
Thon Maker was a YouTube sensation and has had a great deal of hype surrounding him for years. He’s a 7’0″ high school player that has great quickness, ball handling skills and athleticism, someone who could potentially develop into a superstar of the Kevin Durant mold. He was born in South Sudan before moving to Australia as a child.
Here are some of his highlights from the past two years:
7-foot Thon Maker Highlights…cavs pick this man please https://t.co/C7JKKmyui9
— Sam Perovsek (@sam_perovsek) April 4, 2016
Current NBA rules state that a player must be 19 years of age or older and one year removed from high school to be eligible for the NBA Draft. Maker is currently 19 and has been playing for a prep school for the past two years. The last of which technically being his fifth year of high school or his first year out of the traditional high school time period. When you consider Maker is 19, considered an international player and is a year out of high school, it seems hard for the NBA to deny him.
It will be interesting to see the fallout of this potential ruling as it could shake up the current system and encourage players to play at prep schools in lieu of traditional high schools in order to declare for the draft.
This decision will have a huge effect on the NBA Draft as an elite talent like Maker could easily insert himself into the top three discussion and change how many franchises approach the draft now that a player of his caliber is available.
The 2016 draft may have just gotten a little more talented.