Archive for Monday, April 9, 2007

Self, Wright to hold 4 p.m. press conference: Coverage live on Channel 6

NBA draft status is likely topic

April 9, 2007


Kansas University men's basketball coach Bill Self and sophomore Julian Wright will hold a 4 p.m. press conference today in Hadl Auditorium to address Wright's future.

It is believed at that time that Wright, who was KU's third-leading scorer and leading rebounder this season on its way to the Elite Eight, will declare himself eligible for June's NBA Draft.

The press conference will be shown live on Sunflower Broadband Channel 6.


Unix_Admin 11 years ago

As a KU fan, this kinda sucks. I can't be upset with the kid though, if I had that kind of money sitting on the table in front of me I would have to grab it too.

trinity 11 years ago

ahhhhh, yeah, but dang julian-please hang around a bit longer! finish your education!

i understand the lure of the $$, too...i admit to not being very wise when it comes to player ability, but is julian really "ready" for the nba? just curious.

StirrrThePot 11 years ago

He is gone, gone, gone, folks. Guess he didn't want to follow the Florida Fab 5's lead in sticking around for a chance to win it all.

kmat 11 years ago

He'll regret it. Enjoy warming somebody's bench for at least a few years Julian. He's an idiot to go for it now since there's Durant, Oden and the Fab 4 from FL. If he goes first round, he'll be at the back of the pack. Kids never learn and just look at the money to be made. His long term career opportunities would be better if he stayed another year.

Take a look at all the other KU players in the NBA. Most are bench warmers.

thai_oracle2000 11 years ago

He's not ready for these reasons: 1. Can't dribble reliably 2. Was invisible in the big games (with exception to FL) 3. Inconsistent throughout the season 4. Doesnt have the "eye of the tiger" or go-get-em attitude

JAD 11 years ago

"Take a look at all the other KU players in the NBA. Most are bench warmers."

Nick Collison GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 77 29.4 9.9 8.2 1.0 50.3

Drew Gooden GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 76 28.1 11.2 8.6 1.1 47.1

Kirk Hinrich GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 76 35.9 16.7 3.5 6.2 44.6

Paul Pierce GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 47 37.0 25.0 5.9 4.1 43.9

Raef LaFrentz GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 21 10.4 2.7 2.1 0.2 35.6

Scot Pollard GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 23 4.3 1.0 1.3 0.1 40.0

Wayne Simien GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 6 10.2 1.8 1.3 0.2 26.7

Billy Thomas GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 17 7.7 2.2 0.8 0.5 32.5

Jacque Vaughn GP MIN/G PPG REB/G AST/G FG % 58 11.2 2.7 0.9 1.9 42.4

mom_of_three 11 years ago

Julian did not disappear for every game except for Florida. Did you not see the KU vs MU game at Mizzou arena? It was the Julian show. When Julian's game is on, he ignites this team.
I agree I was scared to watch him dribble the ball down the court, but he averaged 12 points a game, one of the leaders on the could he be invisible??

mom_of_three 11 years ago

I personally don't want to see him go, but good luck to him if he decides...

one more year, one more year, one more year, one more year, one more year, one more year, one more year..........

Eric Beightel 11 years ago

The NBA draft is less about ready for primetime players as it is "upside." Julian has "tremendous upside" and ESPN analyst Chad Ford has him as a solid top 10 pick which means a guaranteed contract and guaranteed money.

If he stuck around and got injured or simply had a bad year that draft position could drop precipitously and he'd be out all of that guaranteed money.

Regarding the Gator players (the fab 4), they came back to win a second title and leave their mark on the college basketball history books as one of only 5 or 6 teams to ever repeat. It's not even a comparison.

As for the "most are benchwarmers" comment: I give you Drew Gooden, starter for Cleveland Cavaliers, Nick Collison, starter for Seattle Supersonics, Kirk Hinrich, starter for Chicago Bulls, Paul Pierce, starter for Boston Celtics. That's four players starting for teams - Cleveland and Chicago are playoff teams (Boston could be too if not for Doc Rivers). The remaining professional Jayhawks are: Raef LaFrentz - bench for TrailBlazers, Scot Pollard - bench for Cleveland, Wayne Simien - bench for Miami Heat, Jacque Vaughn - bench for San Antonio Spurs. Raef, Scot and Jacque have all been in the league at least 8 years and each has been a starter during their career but as they enter their twilight years they are relegated to the bench. Simien is playing behind Udonis Haslem and is the first power forward off the bench.

Julian, good luck. I appreciate your efforts and I hope you find more success at the next level.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 11 years ago

Well over half of all NBA players are bench players. And they still make on average, over $1 million a year. So there really isn't much incentive for him to stay if that's what he wants to do.

kmat 11 years ago

For those going off on the bench warming comments - take a look at the minutes most KU players get in the NBA. They are bench warmers! And the comment about how most are oldies in the NBA and that's why they don't get the playtime - B.S. They never got the playtime. When you take out Coll, Gooden, Hein and Pierce you get an average of less than 9 minutes per player per game.

Now what's more important, a good college education in case you have an injury that permanently ends your career or mainly sitting on a bench, hoping you get those 9 minutes of playing time per game? How many ex players in all sports do you hear about not saving their money and not having and education to back them up once their short-lived pro careers are over? Only a handful can make it as a coach.

Money means nothing, integrity is everything. The Gators players that all returned last year had integrity. Something our KU teams have been lacking. Money should only be a consideration for any of these boys if they're family's are really poor and they need to support them. That's not an issue with a single KU player.

And to scenebooster - you have no idea what kind of money I make. I can say I'm sure I squash what most of you make (I was smart and took advantage of my scholarships and obtained multiple degrees so I could run the companies people like you only punch a clock for), but of course I'm not making what Wright will make. I also wasn't aware that you had to be a millionaire to comment on these posts.

sourpuss 11 years ago

You can't risk injury playing for the university system. Take the money and run. There are plenty of skilled high schoolers who would jump at a chance to play at a storied program such as KU.

tkilgore 11 years ago

Remember when Julian was signed to Kansas? Self took a real long shot recruiting him when he flew out to Chicago and when he arrived he just talked to Julian for a little while and left. Self left thinking he had no chance at signing him and as he was driving off Julian called him and said, "Ok, I'll do it. I'll come to KU." What a great story. I'm just happy we've had him for two years. How sick would it have been to have him playing for Missouri or Duke. Just remember the good times, like that 360 slam against Texas in the 2006 big 12 title game.

Chicago_JHawk 11 years ago

"Money means nothing, integrity is everything."-kmat

Huh?? Money might not mean much to you, but you've been kind enough to tell all of us that you have alot of it. I don't make a fraction of what Julian Wright will make, but if I had a chance to, I'd take it in a second. Beats punching a clock for a pompous a$$ like you.

Eric Beightel 11 years ago

kmat -

I don't know how much of an NBA fan or really even a KU fan you are but allow me to let you in on a little secret...the only players who are currently in the NBA who left KU prior to graduation are Paul Pierce and Drew Gooden. Both players start for their respective teams. The other players that I mentioned that do not start (LaFrentz, Pollard, Simien, Vaughn) all graduated and therefore do not fit the criteria you are using to assault Julian Wright.

I will reiterate, however, that all but one KU player that is currently in the league has been a starter at some point in their career - Pollard started for Indiana for several years, LaFrentz started for both Denver and Boston, Vaughn started for Atlanta and was a valuable fill-in for Jason Kidd in New Jersey when he was hurt. Simien is on his second year and already has a ring, so I'm guessing he's not complaining too much.

Your understanding of the pro-game is severely lacking. There is a finite window of opportunity for many of these kids. If your draft stock is high and you are assured a lottery spot, you have to go and secure your guaranteed contract and associated money. School will always be there and Julian has proven that he is determined to get his degree. However, if he were to play next year and blow out his knee - the 1 to 3 million per that he was expecting to make would no longer be there...but he'd have his communications degree! That's some consolation.

tkilgore 11 years ago

Grow up guys. . . We don't know what it's like to make this sort of decision. In fact only a handful of people understand.

SouthernBelle 11 years ago

kmat - what an a$$ you come across as being... People with real money, don't usually feel the need to go around bragging about it.

countrygirl 11 years ago

Just because you have money doesn't mean you have class.

jayhawk1234 11 years ago

hmmm...... someday we will see the Julian Wright Bowling Center?? once he makes a boat load of cash!

Good luck JuJu

leedavid 11 years ago

Julian is more than welcome to leave if he likes...I wished he would stay. I did not know the NBA was looking for someone that can't pass, can't dribble and is average more often than good. But everyone seems to think they will pay him huge sums of money for his we will just see.

tkilgore 11 years ago

can't pass ! ! ! ??? Lee have you watched a single game? We're talking Basketball, you understand?

leedavid 11 years ago

I did not see them all, to be sure..I do remember turnovers being a problem...There were times the Jayhawks had more turnovers than Krispy Cream as I recall. The AP and Coaches did not seem to think that highly of Julian either as I recall. Look at the names of Jayhawks playing pro ball. You think Julian is as a soph. at their level?

Baha 11 years ago

"Money means nothing, integrity is everything. The Florida players that all returned last year had integrity."

Kmat, for such an educated individual, you are a idiot... Florida's players have all thrown there names into the NBA Draft, NONE of them are seniors.... NONE of them will graduate... Is that the integrity you are speaking ok?That Joakim Noah (Mr. Showboat) actually hurt his draft status by returning to school... Last year he would have been a top two pick... College is to prepare yopu for your future... Julian is ready for his future... Ther have been a few people make it when they left college early, I think... Signed, Bill Gates...

tkilgore 11 years ago

Agreed, not only fair-weathered but completely unknowing of the potential. Have you seen the highlight reel passes, and can't dribble? lets keep in mind guys he is like 6'9. . .

JAD 11 years ago

"When you take out Coll, Gooden, Hein and Pierce you get an average of less than 9 minutes per player per game."

Of the nine ex-Jayhawks in the NBA right now, if you disregard almost half of them, then they all play less than ten minutes a game. Also, please disregard the facts that EVERYONE else has brought up regarding where these players are in their careers - LaFrentz, Pollard and Vaughn HAVE ALL BEEN STARTERS!

If you disregard 50% of the vote, the other guy got 100% of the vote...

Baha 11 years ago

Good Luck JWright... Come back and see us sometime and keep those Chicago kids comming our way...

thare 11 years ago

I love Julian and it will break my heart if he leaves, but seriously all the "sitting on the bench comments?" Yeah that would really suck, practicing with the best players in the world and then getting a front row seat to watch them, drawling a million a year and learning the game while waiting for your chance to get in. Yeah, sounds terrible, can't believe he'd even consider leaving Kansas.

justinryman 11 years ago

Ithink most have forgotten what the NBA draft is all about...Its not about a teams needs, its about a players upside, the future. If it was what a team needed then KG and Kobe would not have been top 5 picks, but the scouts saw thier upside and even then people were saying it was crzy for teams to take them, those teams look pretty smart now.

If Ju goes or stays I wish him luck, he has tremdous upside and skill. I think he is more built for the NBA/street game instead of the half court game in college.

Many have stated "so many great players coming out" But no one has mentioned a name to go with them. yeah the Florida 4 will be up there but Green will not be a top 10 pick. Ju has a chance for a lottery pick, youi know as well as I do, if that was there for the taking you would take it.

mom_of_three 11 years ago

The KU players which are supposedly "bench" players still make more than I do, or probably most of us on this link.
And they are still employed by an NBA team.

jayhawks71 11 years ago


5 of 9 ARE benchwarmers. If you don't play even 1/4 of a teams minutes, you are keeping that vinyl seat nicely heated. Regardless, Julian has great potential and at times has demonstrated outstanding ability. The problem is that he is inconsistent. That is what keeps you on the hardwood and off the bench in the NBA. Not sure who told him he will be a lottery pick; if that is what he is counting on, I think he will be a bit disappointed on draft day. Someone might take him in the bottom half of the first round, but lottery? Not at this point.

I thought Julian was going to be able to graduate in 3 years.

jayhawks71 11 years ago

I used to be of the mindset that they should get their education, because, what if they get hurt. I realized the error in that thinking a while back. If you get one year's salary as an nba lottery pick (or even as a drafted player), you will make more money in that one year than most people will make in their entire lives (e.g., $50k for 45 years... 2.25mil). At that point, you will also have plenty of money to pay the tuition to finish your education, which will still be an option if you have a blown out knee.

Baha 11 years ago

jayhawks71, Every Mock Draft has Julian in the Lottery... justinryman has it exactly right, It's all about his upside and Julian has tremendous potential...

leedavid 11 years ago

I am sure 9 of those 9 are rich, but please do not even try to put Julian in that league...Did he get All-American and we did not know it? He's more like along the lines of Miles at this point. He has a long way to go before he plays to the level of the other names used. I wonder is Miles getting a million plus to sit on an NBA bench?

jayhawks71 11 years ago

Scene, the comment had to do with benchwarming and it was accurate MOST (5 of 9) are keeping the seat warm for about 40 mins a game. If you think those guys sitting at the end of the bench would rather make the salary they make and sit on the bench or make the salary they make and play, you would be foolish to pick the former. They want to play.

I will be the first to applaud Julian if he is a lottery pick; I think he is being misled. I sure hope he doesn't drop to the second round. He should simply not sign an agent yet.

Kontum1972 11 years ago

who cares.....theres more where he came from.... just remember to give the $$$.00 to the scholarship program.


crane13 11 years ago

Don't forget he is a weak shooter, but hey, money makes everything perfect! Too bad he can't buy a jumper with his first million ps guy who makes a lot of dough...who cares!!!!!!!

jayhawks71 11 years ago

baha, mock drafts are just that. Mock drafts. It is unheard of that they even take into account a single trade that has repercussions for the rest of the draft. People (even the "experts") fail to include all of the overseas players; teams take chances on guys that are under contract overseas and then sometimes don't make it to the NBA.

I will wait until the draft and see where Julian gets picked. If he is a lottery pick good for him. I simply do not expect to see him as a lottery pick. I didn't see a lottery pick playing ball for the Jayhawks this season.

shockchalk 11 years ago know I'm often on the other side of the fence with you but you are right on the money this time. It's ridiculous that so many of these people are bashing Julian when they were cheering for him a few weeks ago. He has tremendous talent and he has to do what's best for him. Instead of criticizing him, they should be thanking him for a wonderful time at KU. He is going to college to prepare for the NBA and the scouts think he's ready. He can always go back to college later, I'm sure he'll have the economic ability to do so.

LtDan 11 years ago

I wish Julian all the best. I don't think he's really ready for the NBA and I'm guessing he's got agents calling him advising him in their best interest and not his. I hope I'm wrong and we see Julian on the NBA court next year. Every Pierce, Hinrich, Collison etc. we put in the NBA increases our recuiting profile.

Mkh 11 years ago

There is however such a thing as leaving too early in my opinion. I don't want to "bash" Julian for his decision, but I am concerned for him because I don't think he is ready to play in the Pros on the level we'd love to see him at. The problem is that some kids come out early by being swooned with agents talking lottery and they end of going much later, to an established team that won't give them a good contract or playing time. Then they have a few rough years that shatters their confidence and you never hear from them again.

I hope this won't happen to Julian. Good luck and thanks for the memories.

Confrontation 11 years ago

Sounds like we have a bunch of loser Missery and K-State fans on here.

"Money means nothing, integrity is everything."

Sounds like someone who never had to earn his own money (trust fund baby). Julian has tons of integrity, and this money will help his entire family. Making this decision to go to the NBA and support his family shows more integrity than what is shown by idiots like kmat.

SimiensRainbow 11 years ago

It's really, truly mindboggling that anyone would offer Pollard/Vaughan/Simien/Thomas/Raef vs. Pierce/Collison/Gooden/Hinrich as a demonstration of anything except how remarkably well the amount of talent NBA scouts thought they when they were drafted matched up with their relative amounts of success.

Except for Raef, who may or may not have panned out, but whose career was in any case hampered by a serious knee injury 12 games into an NBA career, we're talking about guys who were drafted in the top 12 (ie the lottery) versus Pollard at 19, Jacque and Simien barely in the first round and Thomas a UFA. (he wonder is that Vaughn is in the league at all after this many years, not that he's been primarily a bench player.)

And yes, Julian Wright has lottery-level talent and will be drafted there despite the fact that he can't shoot very well and probably never will. So no, it's not much of a choice.

The one tiny point the "stay in school" types have in their favor is that this years draft is loaded. And the financial difference between being a top five pick next year and a top 12 this one is substantial, just not as substantial as the difference between a top 12 pick this year and blowing out his knee against Iowa St next February.

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