Today In Questionable NBA Draft Rumors: Evan Turner and Daniel Orton

Watching the early entry list populate for the NBA draft this season should be interesting for a number of reasons. The window for workouts has been significantly cut down for underclassmen, so they must make a quicker decision about whether to return to school. It could lead to poor decisions by players, but it also leaves programs in a state of limbo for a shorter period of time. (Of course, since players have so little power, it seems silly to strip them of this privilege, too.) In addition to the shortened workout window, there's the whole looming labor issue in the NBA for 2011. A lockout isn't out of the question. Some players might be rushing to get a pay day. Although that didn't really happen this year with the NFL draft, so perhaps that element is being overstated. ↵

↵Regardless, with all but four teams finished with the NCAA Tournament, we're starting to get some of the bigger fish. Wake Forest's Al-Farouq Aminu declared for the NBA draft and will hire an agent, he announced on Thursday. But some of the other news is less definitive. Take the examples of Kentucky center Daniel Orton and Ohio State jack-of-all-trades Evan Turner. On a day like this, it appears we have a case of poor communication and an April Fools' Day joke. ↵

↵

↵Daniel Orton's father, Larry, said his son will declare for the draft, but will not hire an agent so he has the option to return to Kentucky next season. Orton wasn't a starter for the Wildcats, but that didn't stop players like Corey Maggette and Marvin Williams from coming out after one year in the past. But hold the phone, as Daniel himself is weighing on the matter via Twitter and news release: ↵

↵
↵⇥Twitter: I would like for anyone to disregard anything that you might have heard my father say he was taken the wrong way in his interview. ↵⇥

↵⇥News release: "I have not declared for the NBA draft. I'm currently weighing my options and will make a decision prior to the deadline." ↵⇥

↵
↵

↵Orton is described as a "possible first rounder" by NBAdraft.net while Draft Express leaves Orton out of their latest mock all together. I reached out to see whether that was purely a mistake or if that's just based on a hunch he won't come out. Or maybe they just don’t' think he'd be drafted, which I find hard to believe. ↵

↵

↵The other rumor that I tend to file under "April Fools' Day" comes from Mark Titus, the famous Ohio State walk-on, who is talking like Evan Turner might return to Columbus for another season. He tweets the following: ↵

↵
↵⇥Impressed w/ OSU recruits in McD's game last night. With The Villain coming back, they should be preseason #1. I really might redshirt now. ... Let me clarify. The Villain hasn't officially decided, but he's hinted to me by saying things like "We're gonna be loaded next year". ... He's also hinted by saying "I'm going to stay for my senior year" and "I'm not going to NBA this year". Sorry I drew conclusions from this. ↵
↵Now, had it just been the first two tweets and not been on April 1, it would've sounded legit, but Draft Express comes in to burst everyone's bubble: ↵
↵⇥@clubtrillion is having fun with Ohio State fans on April Fools Day. Evan Turner is not coming back, he already started meeting with agents. ↵
↵

↵Sorry to dash the dreams of Jared Sullinger playing alongside Evan Turner. That was probably a fun 15 minutes of fantasy though. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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