Julian Wright notebook
Julian Wright not only declared for the NBA Draft on Monday, but also indicated he’d sign with an agent.
What that means is he’s not going to change his mind, withdraw from the draft by June 18 and return to Kansas University for a third season.
“My parents and family will be helping with that process in days and weeks to come,” Wright said, indicating he wanted to have an agent in place by the start of June, when he will begin workouts in NBA cities.
KU coach Bill Self said: “Right now he is keeping his options open for an agent, but not keeping his options open of returning unless something happens in the time frame between now and when he’d select an agent.”
Self said since Wright was a projected lottery pick, “I don’t know if there’s really a need to test (the waters). Of course we’d all be hopeful if things didn’t work out he could make a decision to come back. The reality is things are probably going to work out for him.”
¢ Work in progress?: Wright, who turns 20 on May 20, said he does not expect to dominate his first season in the NBA.
“I’m not saying I’m going to be the next LeBron James or an impact player right away. I will have a lot of ups and downs my first year, second, maybe third. I’m ready for that.”
Self said: “Julian is very versatile, a fabulous athlete. I do think there are things he has to get better at. I don’t know many 19-, 20-year-olds who don’t have to get better. He’ll work hard.”
¢ No word on Rush: Self said KU’s other draft possibility, Brandon Rush, probably won’t have a decision for another 10 days to two weeks. Players have until April 29 to declare.
“I don’t think he is in a big hurry to let anyone know what he is going to do,” Self said. “It is in his best interests to wait and see who else declares. We’ll gather as much information as we can. Brandon’s decision will be made on what is best for Brandon. I don’t anticipate anybody else will have any input into that decision (but Brandon).”
Rush said he has been concentrating on school, not the draft.
“I haven’t really been paying too much attention to it,” he said as he exited the fieldhouse after a workout. “I haven’t talked to anybody yet. It’s still kind of open, though.”
Of Wright leaving, Rush said: “Julian is his own person. He feels he’s a top lottery pick -and he’s a high lottery pick. I’d do the same thing if I was in his situation, too.”
Of the rest of the roster, Self said: “Based on my conversations with our team, I’d say as Brandon told everybody it’s wait and see. Everybody else for the most part seems on board. Things do change in this business from time to time. I feel good about all our guys (returning).”
¢ Recruiting: KU currently has 12 scholarship players for next season. The Jayhawks must be at 12 the next two seasons instead of 13 because of NCAA penalties. KU, however could delay the penalty a year if it desires.
“You don’t replace Julian with three days notice,” said Self, who learned of Wright’s decision Friday. “It is a situation that potentially puts us behind the 8-ball, a situation we may have to scramble (for another player if KU loses Rush). The team as it is today looks good on paper. My staff does a good job of digging ’em (recruits) up. If we do get somebody we’ll get somebody that can help us. There are guys out there, I just don’t know exactly where they are. We’ll work hard to get that done.”
¢ He can practice: Self said Wright would be able to continue working out with the team as long as he continues to fulfill his academic responsibilities. “School is important to Julian. Now is a great opportunity to show school is important to him,” Self said, noting “our leverage is limited now. We will not get him up and take him and drop him off (at class). There’s no obligation for him to get in the car and go.”
¢ Next season: Self said fans should shed no tears for the Jayhawks. “We’re going to be good no matter what. It does hurt losing a caliber of player and person like Julian. But somebody usually steps up.”
Wright’s Career at KU
- Julian Wright’s press conference
- Moving forward (04-10-07)
- Keegan: Potential potent in NBA (04-10-07)
- What others are saying (04-10-07)
- Podcast:Julian Wright announces his intention to enter the 2007 NBA Draft
- See what they’re saying on the street Â»
- 6Sports Video: Julian Wright is headed for the NBA (04-09-07)
- 6Sports Video: Fans react to news of Wright’s departure (04-09-07)
- 6Sports Video: Wright becomes first KU sophomore to declare for the NBA Draft (04-09-07)
- Fullcoverage of Julian Wright Â»