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Predictions: When will Frank Jackson, Tony Bradley and Omer Yurtseven finalize NBA decisions?

 

As the NBA Draft Combine takes place in Chicago through Sunday, many eyes are on the ACC’s three undecideds who are participating. Duke’s Frank Jackson, North Carolina’s Tony Bradley and NC State’s Omer Yurtseven have until May 24 to decide whether they will stay in the draft or return to school.

How soon will those players finalize their future plans? ACC Sports Journal editor Mark Carroll and analytics guru Brian Geisinger make their predictions:

 

Frank Jackson

MC: Of the three ACC players still on the fence, I think Jackson’s situation appears to be the most complicated. Could he be a first-round pick? Possibly. Is he a first-round lock? I really don’t think so. In addition to that uncertainty, Duke is still trying to land 5-star point guard Trevon Duval, so we don’t even know for sure what the 2017-18 Duke roster will look like outside of Jackson. Considering all of those factors, I don’t expect Jackson to announce his decision immediately after the combine.

Prediction: Right around the deadline

BG: The status of Trevon Duval appears to be a significant wild card in Jackson’s decision-making process. Or maybe it isn’t. It’s not really clear. Duke will have 80 minutes per game and plenty of possessions to go around for all three guards if Duval and Jackson both decide to play ball in Durham next season with Grayson Allen. Regardless, I, like Mark, expect Jackson — a likely second-round pick — to make his decision closer to the deadline.

Prediction: Right around the deadline

 

Tony Bradley

MC: If Bradley is looking to solidify a spot in the first round, then an impressive showing at the combine could erase any doubt. From that standpoint, it might not be long before he has all of the information and feedback he needs. Now, does that mean he’ll make an official announcement right away? That’s a different question. Bradley told reporters right after UNC’s national championship win that he planned to test the waters, but an official decision didn’t come until weeks later. Because draft position is likely an important factor here, I could also see Bradley waiting to find out what other undecided players choose to do.

Prediction: Right around the deadline

BG: Bradley raised some eyebrows on Thursday at the combine when he opted not to participate in that day’s 5-on-5 sessions. It was later reported that he tweaked an ankle. If that’s the case, then I wouldn’t read too much into why he decided not to play. However, if he got word that he’s a lock for the first round, which seems unlikely, then it’d make sense to shut it down. Bradley has done a great job keeping his options open, not letting much information leak out. He wants a first-round guarantee, though, and I believe he will depart Chicago with the answer in mind — no matter what that is.

Prediction: Shortly after the combine

 

Omer Yurtseven

MC: While some players test the waters and participate in the combine to improve draft stock, others simply do it for the experience and feedback. If you’re in Yurtseven’s shoes, have you already made up your mind to an extent? Only he can answer that, but I don’t see this as a decision that’s going to drag out. If I had to guess, I think he’ll reveal his 2017-18 plans at some point next week.

Prediction: Shortly after the combine

BG: It’s become an annual tradition: Top-10 picks sit out the combine events, which makes sense. What’s the opportunity cost of not participating? Basically, nothing. However, the combine works for two other groups of players: fringe first-round-pick types, like Bradley, or for college players who want to receive feedback on what they need to work on. Justin Jackson is a well-documented example of the latter. Yurtseven didn’t light up the charts with his measurables and struggled in 5-on-5 play. I, too, think his decision is on the horizon — perhaps early next week.

Prediction: Shortly after the combine