‘Nowhere To Go But Down’- Former Kentucky Wildcat Explains Why Jalen Suggs Needs To Declare for the 2021 NBA Draft

Published 04/15/2021, 7:00 PM EDT
Mar 9, 2021; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Jalen Suggs (1) cuts down the net after defeating the BYU Cougars in the West Coast Conference Tournament championship game at Orleans Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports


Jalen Suggs is one of the top picks in the 2021 NBA Draft for a reason. His freshman campaign for the Bulldogs almost ended in glory that would have him immortalized. However, it ended in defeat at the hands of the Baylor Bears in the championship game. That is the only game Gonzaga lost all season, losing their chance at becoming undefeated champions.

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Despite the loss, Suggs still has one of the highest draft projections for incoming college freshmen. There have been rumblings of him even going all the way to the top of the Draft. Either way, his pre-draft ranking warrants him a place in the NBA, and Reggie Hanson believes Suggs shouldn’t return to Gonzaga for another season.

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“I think Suggs is definitely ready to make the move. If you know you’re going to be (top 5) regardless of your class, then you definitely need to go. Suggs has a chance to be a top-three pick. (if) he stays another year, NBA scouts start picking apart his game to see what he’s not good at.

“So when you got a chance to be a top-five pick like he is, you’re a freshman, you gotta go and make that move. Because he has nowhere to go but down by staying.”

Jalen Suggs: Would it be a bad decision to stay in college for another season?

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Jalen Suggs has no reason to return to college basketball. While he could make another championship run, that would include all his teammates also not declaring for the Draft. But is NCAA glory more important than these Zags players changing their life by getting first-round NBA Draft contracts?

Mar 9, 2021; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Jalen Suggs (1) poses with the most valuable player trophy after the West Coast Conference Tournament championship game against the BYU Cougars at Orleans Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Playing as amateurs in the NCAA means that these players cannot make a nickel for their ability on the court. However, that all changes if they go pro. Considering the generational money that is at stake in these situations, Suggs shouldn’t think twice about going to the NBA.

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It is honorable to go back to college, but Suggs is already guaranteed a lot of perks if he gets drafted. He gets the best rookie contracts possible in the top-five and will go to a team that will rely on him. It’s too good to pass up.

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Ishaan Bhattacharya

1510 articles

Ishaan Bhattacharya is an NBA, NCAA Basketball, and Combat Sports writer at EssentiallySports. Currently, Ishaan is pursuing a Post Graduate Degree in Journalism from Xavier's Institute of Communication. Previously, Ishaan has written for The Indian Express, The Quint, Sportskeeda, and WrestleClub.

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