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NBA submits formal proposal to lower draft-eligible age to 18

After 20 hours or so of endless hot takes and speculation following Zion Williamson’s shoe blowout and knee injury last night, the NBA has officially taken the first step forward to ensuring players are able to enter the draft right out of high school.

According to a report by USA Today, the NBA has officially filed a formal proposal that will lower the draft-eligible age from 19 years old to 18, a move that would likely take place starting in time for the 2022 NBA Draft.

Back in October of 2018, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that 2022 was the target range for the NBA to make the official rule change, with NBA commissioner Adam Silver saying on multiple occasions that the 19-year-old age limit is simply not working for the league, nor is it working for the college basketball ranks.

We have heard speculation about lowering the draft age for years, with the MLB model of players having the option of entering the professional ranks right out of high school or playing in college for a set number of years (likely two) being the most popular outcome.

Obviously this is major news for Kentucky and the rest of the blue bloods in college basketball, as the recruiting world would be flipped upside down. With elite talents such as Williamson, RJ Barrett, Deandre Ayton, etc. entering the draft right out of high school, the nation’s top schools would then compete for the next-best group of talent and groom them for several years before they would be allowed to make the jump to the NBA.

This change has been in the works for quite some time, but it’d be silly to discount the timing of Williamson’s close-call last night and the NBA’s formal proposal as just coincidence.

(USA Today)

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Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

27 Comments for NBA submits formal proposal to lower draft-eligible age to 18



  1. Bluebloodtoo
    5:09 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Most of you won’t believe this, but i bet this would make Calipari very happy.



    • BBNmemberinoh
      6:48 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      He has said for years he does not like the NBA rule and kids doing one and done, so most of us would believe this.



  2. Jiminy Crickets
    5:14 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Sign me up. I love this, been asking for it for years. Call me old school, but the corruption in NCAA always circulated around the top 10-15 kids. Let them go pro, good luck. The rest of the top 15-50 kids will have a legit chance at top schools, and have 2years to develop and take their shot at the league. Love it.



  3. ScottGreene22
    5:15 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Good



  4. Ben27
    5:22 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    i am for the most part happy with the rule. I would like to see it at three years instead of two, but two will work. I would like to see player not drafted to be able to still be eligible for college!



  5. UKinIN
    5:28 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Williamson could get hurt in a high school game more easily than a college game.



    • Look Out Fireworks
      7:28 am February 22, 2019 Permalink

      Statistically not true. Considering Williamson is ineligible to play in high school games and likely won’t be attending many high school games in the future, he could much more easily be hurt in a college game because he will be attending and/or playing in several more this season.



  6. IrishCat
    5:38 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Good for the game.

  7. “…Adam Silver saying on multiple occasions that the 19-year-old age limit is simply not working for the league BECAUSE WE SHOULD BE MAKING ALL THAT DOUGH THAT UK AND DOOK AND UNCHEAT ARE MAKING.”

    There, I fixed it for ya Uncle Fester.



  8. KYcats11
    6:09 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Hot Take: this will be a sad day for college basketball as less people would care about it.



    • runningunnin.454
      6:26 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      Don’t think so; people will still follow and cheer for their college teams. Only the truly elite, like Zion, would take that route. I don’t know, how many would that be…10, 15, 20? There would still be the Draymond Greens, Jimmy Butlers, Damian Lillards, and Steph Currys.



    • Ridge Runner
      6:31 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      Glad I don’t fall into that category of not caring. I’m a UK Cat fan no matter who is on our roster.



    • ClutchCargo
      6:36 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      They cared before the one and done rule, so no.



    • runningunnin.454
      6:39 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      Right, Ridge Runner; the competition will still be there. Klay Thompson is another pretty good player that stayed in college.
      And, there will always be the Grant Williams’s and Admiral Schofields…and Reid Travis’s.



  9. UKCatAttack
    6:23 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    I’m not sure I agree with forcing kids to go to college two years because I think it will make the fringe players in the 11-25 range make the jump to the NBA out of high school when the right move is to go to college for 1 year. Otherwise I support the move. College basketball will be ok.



  10. BBNmemberinoh
    6:33 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    This is great for the NCAA. The many kids that think, or are told, they are NBA ready then don’t get drafted, they could still go to the Gleague or overseas and make a decent living.



    • friendsofcoal
      10:18 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      I can think of several Cal (UK teams) players that weren’t projected in the top 15-20 coming out of high school. Therefore I don’t think it’ll change UK and Cal too much.



  11. ukbradstith
    6:46 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Terrible for the NBA. The NBA was really starting to suck with all the one and dones before they changed the rule years ago.



    • mcp157
      8:28 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      Yeah Lebrun has really hurt the NBA! It’s about time. If one can go fight wars in the Middle East at 18 they should be allowed to play professional basketball out of high school if they are good enough!



  12. IndianaSucks
    6:57 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    That didn’t take long. Do the right thing NBA…



  13. dcforuk
    9:35 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    Could this mean the likelihood of this being Cal’s 3rd to last year at Kentucky just increased today?



    • IndianaSucks
      10:01 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

      Cuz Brad? He’s not exactly a reason to stick around. That being said, he ain’t going anywhere.



  14. IndianaSucks
    9:59 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    3rd to last?



  15. dcforuk
    10:10 pm February 21, 2019 Permalink

    His model may take a significant hit.



    • Look Out Fireworks
      7:35 am February 22, 2019 Permalink

      His “model” took a significant hit when everyone else started doing the same thing and he didn’t adjust to stay ahead. 10 years ago, Cal was an innovator, now he’s doing what everyone else does.



  16. njCat
    12:27 am February 22, 2019 Permalink

    I didn’t see that Silver mentioned anything about requiring future players to stay in college for 2 years. What would be the purpose of that for someone like SGA? The NBA would love to see overlooked players like him in the NBA as soon as it’s obvious they can make it.



  17. UKinIN
    10:31 am February 22, 2019 Permalink

    Silver is just a sock mouth for the Player’s Union.