Anthony Edwards, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard from Georgia, will forgo his NCAA eligibility and declare himself available for the 2020 NBA Draft.
In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the NBA hasn’t made a final decision on its annual draft, which is typically held in June.
Whenever the draft happens, Anthony Edwards will be in contention to be the top pick in the NBA Draft.
During his freshman season, Edwards averaged 19.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.3 steals per game. He knocked down 40.2% of his shots and scored 20-plus points 12 times in 32 games.
Georgia finished 16-16 overall, but they were the second-to-worst team in the SEC with a 5-13 conference record.
Top 5 Prospects – 2020 NBA Draft
1. Anthony Edwards (SG, Georgia)
2. LaMelo Ball (PG, Illawarra)
3. Deni Avdija (SF, Maccabi)
4. James Wiseman (C, Memphis)
5. Obi Toppin (PF, Dayton)
According to consensus NBA mock drafts, Edwards is one of the top potential lottery picks along with point guard LaMelo Ball. Ball, the brother of Lonzo Ball from the New Orleans Pelicans, skipped college and played a season in Australia with the Illawarra Hawks. He impressed scouts with his rapid development Down Under.
Deni Avdija, a small forward who played his ball overseas in Israel at Maccabi Tel-Aviv, has also seen his draft stock rise over the last few months.
James Wiseman, the former #1 high school recruit in the country, got caught in a recruitment scandal in Memphis. The 7-footer is expected to be the first big man selected in the upcoming draft.
Obi Toppin recently won the AP Player of the Year. The Dayton power forward hoped he could lead the Flyers to the Final Four this season before March madness got canceled.
Where Will Edwards Go?
Edwards’ future in the NBA depends on which teams end up with lottery picks.
The Golden State Warriors, Cleveland Cavaliers, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Atlanta Hawks were the worst teams in the NBA before the season got postponed. Those bottom feeders are vying for the #1 overall pick in the NBA Draft, but which one will pick Edwards?
The Warriors were the worst team in the NBA this season, but they really don’t need a superstar scoring guard. They already have the Splash Brothers. Klay Thompson expects to return next season and Steph Curry, who missed most of the season with a fractured left hand, returned shortly before the coronavirus hiatus. Then again, Edwards is still young and could learn from two of the best guards in the league if the Warriors pick him.
The Atlanta Hawks already have Trae Young. Sorry to bust your bubble if you’re from Georgia, but their local hero will probably end up elsewhere.
Lighting It Up: 36 and 37
Edwards made a name for himself early in his freshman season. During the Maui Classic in Hawaii, Edwards lit up Michigan State for 36 points, including seven, 3-pointers. He also added six rebounds, four steals, and two assists.
“(Edwards) single-handedly killed us,” said Michigan State coach Tom Izzo.
Unranked Georgia almost toppled Michigan State, ranked #3 at the time, but the Spartans held off the young Bulldogs. Edwards scored 33 of his game-high 36 points in the second half.
“He’s got an infectious energy with him with his teammates that is rare,” said Georgia head coach Tom Crean.
Late in the season, Edwards put on a clinic when he dropped 36 points on South Carolina during an overtime loss. He shot 11-for-22 from the floor, including four, 3-pointers. He also added seven rebounds, four assists, and four steals.
“Edwards, what can I say?” said Crean. “Once again, he carried us and once again, we failed to give him support on offense.”