Steven Adams Eligibility For 2012 NBA Draft In Question

NEWARK, NJ - JUNE 23: A general view of the names on the draft board after the completion of the first round during the 2011 NBA Draft at the Prudential Center on June 23, 2011 in Newark, New Jersey. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Steven Adams, a beloved center prospect from New Zealand, may not be eligible for the 2012 NBA Draft under the league's age minimum rule.

Steven Adams, a highly touted 7-foot center from New Zealand, may not be eligible for the 2012 NBA Draft, reports DraftExpress' Jonathan Givony. Adams would be eligible under the NBA's 19-year-old age minimum as he turns 19 in July of 2012. But the NBA's age minimum treats U.S. and international prospects differently. While international prospects' eligibility is based on their age in the draft year, U.S. prospects must be one year removed from their high school class' graduation to be eligible.

Adams enrolled in prep school in Massachusetts this year so that he could be eligible to attend Pitt for the 2012-13. That decision, according to Givony, may have shifted his status from an international prospect to a U.S. one, and thus stripping his eligibility in 2012.

It may be moot if Adams has no intention of declaring for the 2012 draft, but a decision in that direction would certainly limit his option.

For more on the Pitt Panthers, visit Cardiac Hill.

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