After completing his junior year with the Mississippi State Bulldogs, the question at hand is will Jamont Gordon enter the NBA draft? Gordon flirted with the NBA draft last year, declaring on April 27th before withdrawing his name 3 days later.
His quick accolades: 1st Team All-SEC (unanimous selection along with Vanderbilt’s Shan Foster); 2nd Team All-American, Rivals.com.
As expected, Gordon was asked the question on the podium immediately after MSU’s 2nd round loss to the Memphis Tigers. His response: “I’m not sure yet. I’m going to look into it and look at everything and see how everything goes for me and then I’ll make my decision.” [Kyle Veazey’s Blog – Clarion-Ledger]
Gregg Ellis, who covers Mississippi State for the NE Miss. Daily Journal is split down the middle, giving Gordon’s return a 50/50 chance.
Should he stay or should he go? [blog post by Gregg Ellis, Inside Miss. State Sports] Most commentors thought that Jamont should return to college, here are a couple interesting thoughts:
buzzardroostus: I don’t think he’s ready, but I hope he goes. With Gordon it’s been feast or famine for the bulldogs. He’s so out of control at times and totally inconsistent in all aspects of the game. He’ll never be a point guard in the NBA, and probably wouldn’t be at any other NCAA school.
dawgbones: Stansbury will tell an agent that Jamont is not going to get better in college than he is now. What you see now is what you will get next spring. In my opinion Jamont will be playing elsewhere next year, probably in an European league.
Bulldog Coach Rick Stansbury had this to say immediately after the Memphis game: “If you can be a first-rounder, it’s best to take that jump” [MSU-Memphis notebook, NE Miss. Daily Journal]
Ok, so before we can answer the main question, let’s answer this precursory inquiry…..IS Jamont Gordon a 1st round NBA draft pick? Well, let’s see how the internet answers that question (much info thanks to the DC Pro Sports Report NBA Mock Draft Database).
- Right now, ESPN.com has Jamont as “second round to undrafted”
- DraftExpress.com – Jamont Gordon, pick #44, 2nd round (to Seattle where he would replicate Damien Wilkins); Charles Rhodes not listed.
- TheSportsBank.com – Jamont Gordon to New Orleans with 1st round pick #28 — Jamont is compared to Ronald “Flip” Murray.
- HoopsWorld.com – Jamont Gordon, pick #40, 2nd round (to Sacramento to learn from Ron Artest); Charles Rhodes not listed.
- RealGM.com – Gordon is listed going in the 2nd round at #35 to the Knicks (poor Jamont!); Rhodes is not listed and get this, Jarvis Varnado is listed at #57 to the Spurs — don’t think he’s entering the draft this year folks.
- BestProPicks.com – Wow! Jamont Gordon again listed in the first round, pick #23 to play with Chris Paul and the New Orleans Hornets. (*note, if the draft was today, New Orleans would not have the 23rd pick) Of course, I’m not sure I trust this assessment: “Give Chris Paulanother weapon. Hornets would be get fit for Gordon, who can light it up from anywhere on the court. Undersized frame might prevent someone from taking him in first round.”
- CollegeHoops.net – Jamont listed in the 2nd round at #37 overall (to the Bucks); Charles Rhodes is not listed among the next 25 (top 85).
- NBADraftPress.com – Jamont can’t avoid the Knicks at pick #35 in the 2nd round. No Rhodes.
- NBADraft.net – Lists Jamont Gordon as a 2nd round pick, #41 to New Jersey……in 2009. So, evidently, going back to school won’t help Jamont. Rhodes is MIA.
- HoopsAddict.com – Lists Jamont Gordon as an “on the cusp” first rounder.
Round 1 Only Mock Drafts Where Neither Gordon Nor Rhodes Appear:
- [TheDraftReview.com – neither appear in the top 50]
- [HoopsVibe.com – mocks both rounds, no Jamont, no Charles]
The Final Word (for now):
What we know is that we don’t know. I welcome Jamont Gordon to go through the “process” as does Rick Stansbury. Since Jamont removed his name before the deadline last year, he can officially enter the draft and truly test the waters this year. Of course, most agents will be in Gordon’s ear offering him money and telling him that he can’t really show his stuff to pro scouts unless he has representation.
I really don’t think Jamont Gordon, in pre-draft workouts, will put on a display which will “wow” scouts into changing their opinion about his game. All the mock draft composers are far from experts, but they sure are good for forecasting. Bulldog fans in Starkville and around the country can only hope that Jamont doesn’t hire an agent, or at least doesn’t get caught with illegally contacting one.
You have to ask two questions:
Will Jamont hurt his draft status by returning to school? I highly doubt it. Gordon has unquestionable talent, it’s only a matter of refining his skills and fundamentals. Yes, it would be great for him to do so while riding an NBA bench and learning a system, the ropes. Unfortunately, at this point, Jamont would not be receiving guaranteed money and would likely be toiling around the NBDL or Europe for his next chance at the league.
The other question, will Jamont Gordon help his status by returning to Mississippi State? I say yes. He already has the physicality to compete in the NBA. However, Gordon would greatly benefit from improving point guard skills and jump shooting on the college level. Plus, if the Bulldogs are once again a good team, Jamont will receive even more media attention which could propel him into a higher NBA salary bracket. A Mississippi State NCAA Tournament run in 2009 would be the icing on the bank account.