UConn guard Bouknight will enter NBA draft

UConn Huskies sophomore guard James Bouknight is entering the 2021 NBA draft and plans to hire an agent, Bouknight told ESPN.

Bouknight, a 6-foot-5 guard ranked No. 18 in ESPN’s Top 100 of available players, has lottery pick potential and developed into the driving force in reestablishing UConn as a Top 25 program and NCAA tournament team under coach Dan Hurley.

Bouknight, considered a prototype NBA shooting guard, averaged 18.7 points and 5.7 rebounds for the Huskies. He missed eight games midseason after undergoing surgery for a left elbow injury.

“Just coming into UConn when I first committed, Coach Hurley had a vision for me helping to turn the program around and bring it back as a winning program,” Bouknight told ESPN. “We reached that target. We were successful, although we didn’t make the run we wanted to make in the tournament.

“The opportunity to play at the highest level of basketball has always been a dream of mine, and it’s an opportunity that I can’t pass up right now. I feel like the pro game, with more open space on the floor, is ideal for my game.”

ESPN draft analyst Jonathan Givony describes Bouknight this way: “One of the best scorers in the country. Smooth with the ball in his hands. Changes speeds and directions impressively. Shot-maker who can get to his pull-up out of a variety of different moves. Elite hesitation move going left.”

The NBA draft lottery will be held June 22. The draft will be held just over a month later on July 29.

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