The NBA and NBPA have been in talks about changing the draft age. This will allow players to once again enter the draft straight out of high school.
Timeline and Technicalities
Since 2005, a player who is entering the NBA draft must be nineteen years old during the calendar year of the draft. The player must also be one year removed from the graduation of high school, or one year from what would have been high school graduation. These rules have gone according the the collective bargaining agreement, or CBA. The NBA and NBPA negotiate this agreement
Starting in December, there is a possible window for change as the NBPA looks to opt out of the current CBA and re-negotiate. It appears that the NBA is also on board with the changes. The change to the rule could be in affect as soon as 2024, affecting the high school graduates of that year.
The NBA and NBPA are expected to agree on lowering draft age eligibility from 19 to 18, per @ShamsCharania.
The change could allow high school players to make the leap directly to the NBA again as early as the 2024 Draft. pic.twitter.com/yoOilsYYnD
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) September 19, 2022
A question many may be asking is what this means for college basketball. There has been a lot of talk about trying to do away with the “one-and-done” phenomenon in college basketball. Players who spent just one year in college have made up almost half of the lottery picks in the NBA draft the past ten years.
NBA teams believe it is best to draft the players out of high school, so they immediately receive NBA training. Colleges have also had their own frustrations as it has been hard to build chemistry with players only being available one season. Despite the complaints, some schools such as Duke and Kentucky have benefitted greatly off the rule, simply getting the countries best recruits every year and cycling them through to the NBA.
New NIL rules in college athletics will also play a part. Some high schoolers can still opt to play one year in college and get compensated generously without being pro yet. There is no easy fix to the issue.
While lowering the 19-and-over draft age will be a significant part of the NBA/NBPA Collective Bargaining discussions, sources tell ESPN nothing has advanced on elimination of the “One-and-Done” rule.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 20, 2022
The new CBA determined in December will change the basketball landscape for young players around the world.