As of Monday afternoon, Syracuse University has confirmed that freshman Malachi Richardson plans to enter his name into the NBA Draft. Richardson has no intentions of signing with an agent at the moment, but this seems like a serious opportunity for the young star.
Richardson averaged 13.4 points, as well as 4.3 rebounds per game in 2015, becoming a huge factor in Syracuse’s postseason run. The shooting guard would start all 37 games for the Orange last season, proving that would be a force to be reckoned with against any opponent he faced.
The reason that Richardson has not decided to sign with an agent is because of the fact that he could possibly return to Syracuse for his sophomore season. “With the new rules, it’s an opportunity for Malachi to get a better understanding of where he would be in the draft.” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said in a release.
Prospects are allowed to work out at the NBA Pre-Draft Combine as well as workout for one NBA team before choosing to remain in the draft or return to their respected team. This is a smart business move by Richardson, he not only gets to prove himself for NBA franchises, but he can always go back and play with the Orange if things don’t go as hoped.
Richardson was able to produce 35% behind the arch for the Orange in the regular season, but shot a whopping 41.5% when playing in 18 ACC games as well. This is important simply because nowadays, it seems that the NBA runs off the three point shot. Richardson not only would be a young asset to play off the bench, but he could ultimately develop into one of the better shooters in the league if coached correctly.
Richardson has the potential to be a big NBA name in the future, but the biggest question is if this is too early? Many could argue that Richardson’s maturity will get in the way, and I personally agree with that. I expect Richardson to go through with the workouts, but the smartest business move is to develop and work on your draft stock for at least one more year before declaring for the draft.