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NBA getting closer to ditching one-and-done for expanded G-League

Kentucky has thrived in the one-and-done era under John Calipari, but the recent turbulence in the sport has amplified the calls for change. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst is reporting that NBA commissioner Adam Silver has been working with the Players Association to open a new route to the league via the G-League and get involved with top talent in high school in hopes of diminishing the influence of the AAU circuit/shoe companies.

A plan is expected to include the NBA starting relationships with elite teenagers while they are in high school, providing skills to help them develop both on and off the court. It would ultimately open an alternate path to the NBA besides playing in college and a way 18-year-olds could earn a meaningful salary either from NBA teams or as part of an enhanced option in the developmental G League, sources said.

The NBA is focusing on getting involved in two important periods in which they currently have minimal contact with prospects: the high school years and the time between high school graduation and when a young player is physically and emotionally ready to join the NBA.

What does that actually mean? More NBA developmental camps for high school prospects, potentially through a partnership with USA Basketball, and, once they’re out of high school, more lucrative G-League contracts.

The NBA already has created an “in between” for the G League and NBA rosters with two-way contracts, in which players earn the equivalent of $75,000 when in the G League and then earn an NBA minimum salary when with the parent club. A plan to create another version of this could be launched for 18-year-olds that would make it more financially attractive for them to stay in the U.S. and get more NBA-level coaching and training as they prepare to eventually be formally drafted into the league.

Calipari has been a vocal critic of letting kids go to the G-League directly from high school, arguing that it would devalue academics, resurrect the shadiness that brought on the one-and-done rule in the first place, and set up the majority of prospects for failure.

“I believe these kids should be able to go out of high school,” Calipari said at SEC Media Day back in October. “The problem with that is, the NBA then has to go back into putting scouts in high school gyms when kids are juniors. Then I ask you, how healthy is that for these young kids?”

“If you send high school kids to the D-League, how many of them will make the NBA? Give me a number. Five percent? You know that’s too high. Probably two or three percent. What do we do with the ones that don’t make it? Tell me.”

An expanded G-League is probably coming whether Calipari likes it or not, but fortunately, as he reminded us at the start of the season, Kentucky will benefit either way.

“If they say, either go to the D-League/NBA or to college, we’re benefitting. [Players] are going to say, do I go to the D-League, am I ready to be on my own? Or do I go to Kentucky for two years and build my brand and win and be a part of this? I’m going to Kentucky.”



Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

29 Comments for NBA getting closer to ditching one-and-done for expanded G-League

  1. FlatTopsAndBlockedShots
    3:40 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    The Adam Silver lead NBA is in a pool of denial about the state of basketball.

  2. westernblue
    3:50 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    Nothing says that colleges can not recruit kids from the G league to come play college basketball once they realize they are not going to make it to the NBA

    • bigb
      4:08 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      If they are paid then they cannot come back to NCAA

    • BBNDan7
      4:13 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      Um yes yes it does. Unless the NCAA changes then rule that players can profit from the sport before playing college ball.

    • Ez21
      4:14 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      How is it you think they can go back to college after earning money to play and ruining their amateurism?

    • jaws2
      4:34 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      Strange as it is, you can play pro baseball and come back to college and play any other sport. So if you’re a pro, it doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t come back to college and play another sport.

  3. secrick
    3:54 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    I have an idea get rid of the NBA.

  4. Sentient Third Eye
    4:14 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    Sounds like the main purpose is to cripple college ball by bringing the best young talent into a new G-League they can use to compete with the NCAA for TV dollars, all at the expense of the kids.

    • KYJelly
      4:54 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      The main purpose isn’t to cripple college ball, that wouldn’t be the NBAs agenda. They want to make money and this way teams can scout and give contracts from what they’ve seen in the G League, not guaranteed contracts out of college.

    • Sentient Third Eye
      11:41 am March 6, 2018 Permalink

      And their second purpose is to get access to the players before they get league representation by the Players Association. They want to separate the wheat from the chaff before they have protections. That way they can toss away the ones they don’t want without having to blow millions on a guaranteed contract for a draft pick. Great deal for the league, but horrible for the kids.

  5. Catcasey1
    4:19 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    College ball will be fine with 4 year players

    • secrick
      4:27 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink


  6. Headhurts
    4:51 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    NBA needs to expand, so many young players and not enough spots, supply is suffocating demand.

  7. Headhurts
    4:51 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink


  8. BigBlueNationDude
    5:55 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    Once these rules are in effect and their is an alternative to going to college like going straight to G league college ball as we know it will take a big hit. Cal will probably quit as nba draft day just wont be what it once was. The level of talent will drop a lot. Bash me all you want but its the truth.

    • shepdog3720
      6:16 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      College baseball seems to be doing just fine

    • 4everUKblue
      6:44 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      Just curious, where you a fake fan when Joe Hall, Eddie Sutton, Rick Pitino, Tubby Smith and Billy G were coaching? You realize all those coaches except Billy G only won one championship don’t you? Or did you just decide to pretend to be a UK fan when Cal took over?

    • BBNDan7
      7:17 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      Let’s also bash your grammar

    • BigBlueNationDude
      8:02 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      Go ahead. Doesnt matter to me. The fact is and I will continue to troll that John Calipari is not a good coach and is going to bring our program into sanctions once again. You blue bloods that worhsip the ground he walks on can make fun of my spelling and my job and whatever all you want. Im getting reactions from you fools on a daily basis which is the funniest part. Even if I was a complete made up person and my views were just strictly for an audience.

  9. A_Blue_Wildcat
    6:29 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    It cracks me up how people forget that the NCAA was doing just fine when all the top players were going to the pros straight out of high school. I mean it was less than 20 years ago when the great LeBron skipped college and yet somehow the NCAA had better attendance that year than it does now. Personally I want this. I can’t deny the success Cal has had with the one and done system, but it pains me to see UK and other colleges used a nba prep schools. My favorite players will forever be the guys who stay 3/4 years, because it’s hard to get that invested into players when they stay for 8 months unless they’re stars like Wall or AD.

    • BigBlueNationDude
      8:03 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

      Yeah but this was pre g league and overseas. Once these guys can get payed some and one and done is over the level of play will go down. You guys seriously wont admit anything.

  10. Mathlete
    7:15 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    The only teams that will suffer for this are the ones paying players. Kentucky will continue to get the best players that aren’t going directly to the NBA instead of players who probably could play in the NBA today

  11. Bigsmooth88
    7:32 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    Expand the G-league, make it a real developmental league. Add a 3rd round to the draft. Allow a kid to declare, and get drafted. If kid chooses college instead, team retains rights for 4 years. Change around signing day, maybe add a scholarship or 2 for the kids that end up not getting drafted. There were players in the past that held schools hostage, when it came to recruiting. Sebastian Telfair comes to mind, when he decided to go pro last minute.

  12. Catuary
    7:36 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    The G-League might have to offer to pay college tuition for its washouts, since they’d be ineligible for scholarships.

    Either that or the NCAA could change its amateurism rules to allow G-League washouts to return to college ball. That would only happen if NCAA basketball popularity greatly diminished and they saw no other choice.

  13. Ridge Runner
    9:25 pm March 5, 2018 Permalink

    Mentioned in general by some here but yes, no matter the fallout of specifics … We will be fine as Kentucky Basketball is a Legacy and have maneuvered through many changes.

  14. TB112162
    2:18 am March 6, 2018 Permalink

    Cal has stated that Kentucky will eat no matter and they will and so will The top programs.The problem is the 90th best player in the class thinks he is and NBA player so what will happen is you will have guys go to the league and fail after 2 years and go work at WalMart..So now instead of getting the top 25 guys the power schools will get the 35-90 guy and the mid majors won’t get those guys anymore this new BS will still hurt college basketball because the NBA is made up of 32 business and there not going to spend money on employees that can’t help the business

  15. Bozzallini
    8:17 am March 6, 2018 Permalink

    Add a third round? Expand the g-league? What’s next, add expansion teams? The NBA is so awful right now…you got 3 or 4 teams that are in the running for a NBA championship. This move will wash out the NBA even more with players that aren’t very good. Players like Lebron and Kobe are one in a million talents that were legitimate high school to pro prospects. Most high schoolers are normal and are not ready for pro basketball.
    Adding a farm system like baseball will be difficult for the NBA bc MLBs farm system is well established and roster sizes are larger. Most of the players drafted out of high school for baseball do not make it to the big show. They play a couple years in single or double A and are cut. They won’t play baseball again most likely, and there’s not too many Russell Wilson’s out there that can switch sports. Adding a farm system will be horrible for the kids. They’ll get paid a little money for a couple years, but then what if they don’t pan out?

  16. dballrb
    1:52 pm March 6, 2018 Permalink

    Ed Sutton only won hangovers at kentucky.

  17. t_f_licker
    4:49 pm March 6, 2018 Permalink

    And by going to Kentucky, he means going to Duke.