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Potential lockout may push more collegians pro

Feb 26, 2010, 11:31 AM EDT

As it is every year, numerous top players dreaming about the NBA are going to hear the same phrase from coaches and scouts, “You need one more year in college.”

Except now, one more year might be two.

With the looming threat of a lockout at the start of the 2011 season, some of those players who could really use one more year are going to go for the paychecks now. If they wait, they could end up waiting longer than they wanted.

“The likelihood is people will panic” and enter the draft prematurely, agent David Falk, who represented Michael Jordan during his NBA career, said this week. “You should come out when you’re ready to make an impact….”

“Most people look at the money for the next year,” he said. “You have to look at what a player can earn over the course of a career.”

There are a lot of uncertainties. What that player will earn under a rookie contract in the new CBA is up in the air, for one.

It’s not a question for John Wall or other players slated for the top 10 in the draft, but it is for a lot of players who would be picked outside the lottery. The question becomes, do they come out now, risk falling to the second round and not having the guarantees but having a year to prove their worth.

Is it better to get smaller paychecks now but get into the NBA, or wait for when you would be a higher draft pick but risk the uncertainty of the new CBA? That’s a tough call for a 19-year-old.

Of course, there’s always the chance that the owners and players won’t be greedy and will find a way to equitably split up all the fans’ money… yea, better go back to making a decision assuming a lockout.

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