Jorda Nwora Louisville

Louisville's Jordan Nwora drives against Duke.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Forecasting the NBA Draft two months before the names are called is riskier than handicapping the Kentucky Derby before the major prep races have been run.

Check back in two weeks. Wait for the top prospects to dance through the Draft Combine in Chicago.

The mock drafts posted after those workouts and interviews will provide a clearer read than wishing, hoping and praying you see from current projections.

There are 16 local players (14 underclassmen and two seniors) who have daydreamed about having NBA commissioner Adam Silver call their names in late June.

It's time to day-dream with them by pulling together the early forecasts from five mock drafts and talking to NBA scouts.

"There's a lot of delusional kids out there," one NBA scout said. "How many guys make it in the NBA every year?

"Maybe 45? A third of those are foreign players. You've got more than 200 guys who have put their names in."

Actually the number is 233, but let's remember the NCAA and NBA have changed the landscape to allow players to hire agents and experience the process with the option of returning to school.

"That's true," one scout said. "But too many of these guys live in a parallel universe. They've just gone through the NCAA Tournament which is one of the greatest sporting events in the country, wall-to-wall publicity and coverage. Now they're watching the playoffs and that's where they want to be because that's where every player wants to be.

"It's difficult to do. Very difficult to do."

LOUISVILLE

Jordan Nwora

What the Scouts Say: "You'll find him all over the board. I've seen him at the end of the first round and I've seen him undrafted. I think Nwora is a player on the come."

"He should probably go back to school, but nobody wants to stay in school. He has one very good skill and that's shooting the ball. I could see a team giving him a promise that they'll take him in the second round and then he'll have a decision to make. But he's probably a second rounder."

Highest Projection: No. 26 NBADraft.net

Lowest Projection: No. 77 ESPN Draft Express

Average Projection: No. 48

Steven Enoch

What the Scouts Say: "Won't get drafted. He needs to go back to Louisville and average double figures in rebounds next season. If you average double figures in rebounds in the ACC, you'll get drafted. I need to see more."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

V.J. King

What the Scouts Say: "His playing time went down at Louisville. How is he going to play in the NBA?"

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

KENTUCKY

PJ Washington

What the Scouts Say: "Love him immensely. Did everything he said he was going to do. Came back to school and worked on the things he needed to work on. He's tough, he plays hard on both ends. He'll have a nice career. More guys should follow his plan."

Highest Projection: No. 11 CBSSports.com

Lowest Projection: No. 33 NBADraft.net

Average Projection: No. 21

Tyler Herro

What the Scouts Say: "Some people really like him. Some people aren't sure. They need to see more consistency on both ends of the floor. He plays really hard. Can shoot it. Helped himself this season. Has things to work on. But they all do."

Highest Projection: No. 17 ESPN Draft Express

Lowest Projection: No. 68 DraftExpress.net

Average Projection: No. 30

Keldon Johnson

What the Scouts Say: "He'll go in the first round. I like him. Good athlete. A lot of people like him. Again need to see more consistency. But guess what? We want to see more consistency from every player."

Highest Projection: No. 7 NBADraft.net

Lowest Projection: No. 25

Average Projection: No. 17

EJ Montgomery

What the Scouts Say: "Might get drafted in the second round but it would be strictly on potential. I need to see more production than potential. Go back to Kentucky next season and do what PJ Washington did. You'll get picked. Potential is great. Production is what gets you drafted."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted


Nick Richards

What the Scouts Say: "Another guy with potential. But he was a bench player, right? Do it at Kentucky. If you do it at Kentucky, you'll get your chance."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

Reid Travis

What the Scouts Say: "Has great internal wiring. Tremendous focus and approach. Love his intensity and toughness. But he's probably a G-League or overseas player. A bit undersized for the strengths of his game. There are guys who grind their way into the league. He can be one of those guys."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

INDIANA

Romeo Langford

What the Scouts Say: "I still like Romeo. I think he's a super smooth athlete who has shown he can score.

"But there are people out there who question if he's tough enough and if he needs to play harder. You hear that.

"And they worry about his shooting. I don't think his shot is broken. He just needs to get in the gym and improve it. There's a difference. It's not a broken shot. Just needs to keep working on it.

"If he performs well in the workouts and interviews, I think he'll still be in the lottery (top 14 picks). I like him a lot."

Highest Projection: No. 11, CBS Sports, BasketballInsiders

Lowest Projection: No. 20 Sports Illustrated

Average Projection: No. 15

Juwan Morgan

What the Scouts Say: "Will probably be in the G-League with a chance for a two-way contract. Loved him as a college player because he got everything out of his ability.

"But he's a little undersized to play inside and didn't shoot the ball well enough from outside last season. He played OK at Portsmouth (Invitational). I hope he makes it. He's like Travis. He gives you everything he has."

Highest Projection: No. 79 CBSSports

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

Devonte Green

What the Scouts Say: "Won't be picked."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

Al Durham

What the Scouts Say: "The same."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

Justin Smith

What the Scouts Say: "The same."

Highest Projection: Undrafted

Lowest Projection: Undrafted

Average Projection: Undrafted

WKU

Charles Bassey

What the Scouts Say: "Another guy who is all over the board. I like him because he's a great rim runner. He really gets up and down the court. I think his upside is tremendous.

"What people want to see is his quickest to the ball in space. How well does he move side to side? What does he do really well? I think he'll go in the second round, if he wants to stay in the draft."

Highest Projection: No. 18 BasketballInsiders

Lowest Projection: No. 53 ESPN DraftExpress

Average Projection: No. 37

MURRAY STATE


Ja Morant

What the Scouts Say: "The best point guard in the draft. The scouts didn't need to see him in the NCAA Tournament. They saw what he could do all season. He's legit."

Highest Projection: No. 2 pick in five mock drafts

Lowest Projection: Second.

Average Projection: Second.

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