My feelings towards a player’s decision about whether or not to turn pro is that of me not caring either way. If a guy thinks he can make it in the league and make some money, so be it. On the other hand, if he prefers to come back for another year — good for him. It is his decision and as long as the player is getting as much factual information as possible while avoiding people with self-serving interests, there is no “wrong” decision for the player.
Although, Adreian Payne‘s decision to return to the Michigan State Spartans is a little bit surprising. Not because I think it is a poor move for him, but because I don’t see the benefit for him as far as his draft stock goes.
To be perfectly honest, I never thought of Payne as an NBA difference-maker. I always saw him making a roster, but not a guy who is going to be in the league for a decade and start in some instances — just a guy whose first contract will be his most lucrative and may be his only one.
Payne is going to be a senior next season. Had he come out this season, the forward was likely to be drafted somewhere near the end of the first-round with a guaranteed contract.
Now that he has come back — playing in his last year of eligibility — there is a chance scouts will start to think of him as “just another senior” who does a few things well. That is assuming his production (especially in ways that are validated through statistics) doesn’t jump through the roof.
Regardless, Payne will still have a shot to make an NBA roster after his senior season. However, it may have gone from him being guaranteed some cash to Payne having to earn it — which for him, probably won’t be a problem.
Joe is a Senior Writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @JosephNardone