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Jodie still looking for a first round guarantee, getting advice from Tubby

As we mentioned earlier in the week, Jodie Meeks worked out with the Minnesota Timberwolves (with Tubby Smith in attendance), who hold three first round picks in June’s NBA Draft. I’ll go ahead and reiterate that I thinkt he T-Wolves are a team to keep an eye on with their three first-rounders, but Jodie says he’s still trying to find that guaranteed slot. The Pioneer Press sat down with Meeks and put together what was actually a pretty thorough and solid interview – probably the best we’ve seen since he declared for the draft. Here are some of the interesting exchanges:

BS: What will determine whether you go into the NBA draft?

JM: I have to have a definite feeling I’m going to be in the first round. If I get some answers from different people that I’m in the first round, I think I’ll stay in the draft. If not, if I don’t get any definite answers, I’ll probably go back to school and try to compete for a national championship.

 

BS: What people will give you those answers?

JM: I try to get as much information as I can in my workouts and from different people. I talk to my family. I talk to coach (John) Calipari to see what he thinks. I talk to guys like coach (Tubby) Smith. I try to get all the information I can and make a smart decision.

 

BS: Did you ever consider leaving Kentucky and following Tubby to Minnesota?

JM: I thought about it. I had to do what was best for me, and that was to stay. I didn’t want to lose a year and have to sit out. Staying at Kentucky worked out well for me.

 

BS: How much have you improved from one season to the next and, if you return to Kentucky, do you expect another leap in your game?

JM: I think I made a drastic change. Getting this experience (at NBA workouts) is good. It taught me a lot. There’s more spacing in the NBA game. So, I think I’ll bring that knowledge to the college game, if I go back.

 

BS: If you hear from people that you’re likely to be a late first-round pick, would that deter you from staying in the draft? Do you want to hear you’ll be a lottery or mid first-round pick?

JM: Right now, I just have to have a definite answer. If somebody gives me a definite answer that they’ll pick me in the first round, I think I’ll stay. But if not, I’ll go back to school.

Meeks still has until June 15 to withdraw from the draft.

Article written by Thomas Beisner