There should have been little surprise when it was announced several days ago that Joel Embiid, Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins would be skipping the upcoming NBA Draft combine. There is no need for players of their caliber to attend. These three are the top three prospects coming into the NBA Draft by a long shot, and the only issue of note between the three is Embiid’s back. Even with that, there is no questioning that he will be drafted in the top three, and if not there, then in the top five.
This trio of players may set the stage for future stars entering the draft. No longer will the combine be an event to attend for those who have shown that they are the top prospects. The only thing going to the combine would do would reaffirm thoughts about them, or expose minor flaws that could get blown out of proportion. (See difference between 4.4 and 4.5 in the NFL).
The combine should be a place for mid-level prospects and for players who need to prove themselves, who may have gone more unnoticed than they should have. This is a place for these types of players to impress scouts and get people to spread their names around the league.
This new development of skipping the combine is without a doubt due to agents’ influence on these players. What they are doing is protecting the players, albeit for their mutual benefit.
The players are set to make so much money from both their contracts and endorsement deals that it would be foolish to put them in a situation in which they could potentially get injured, or show some of their flaws. This allows the player’s performance on the court to be the sole judge for executives, and also ensures max profits for the agents after the draft.
This is in no way a move by the players to stand up the tradition of the combine or to try to say that they are bigger than the event itself. It is essentially a business decision being decided upon by both agent and player.
If you are still angry about players skipping the combine, just watch this video of Jabari Parker to realize why it is not necessary for him to attend the combine.