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High School Athletes Going Pro

Essay by   •  February 11, 2011  •  Research Paper  •  1,876 Words (8 Pages)  •  1,394 Views

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Today the NBA is a much different game them what it used to be. The days of afros , short shorts, and white chuck Taylors has been replaced. Now days the NBA has grown into more of an entertainment business then the original classic sport. The NBA is now all flash (not saying this is a bad thing), with baggy shorts, slam dunks, and trash talking. Another trend that has changed is the amount of time players are spending in college. In the 60s and 70s it was an expectation that players spend all four years in college and mature into an NBA player , but in the 80s players started to leave for the league after there freshman , sophomore, and junior seasons. Starting in the late 90s players started now even taking advantage of a college education and started giving up there college eligibility. Players are now taken it to the next level and going strait to the NBA. Since 1995 over 20 players have been drafted to NBA teams and 39 have declared eligibly for professional play. This is an important issue in professional basketball because each year more and more players are making this jump and many people feel it has both a positive and negative effect to the game.

In my opinion, if a high school player has the opportunity to make the jump to the NBA, he should be able to do so. Last year the NBA made a new rule that players entering the league, must be a least 19 years of age (Fred Carter 1st Para), I myself totally disagree with this rule. The first reason why I do not agree with this age discriminating rule is that most of these players come from poverty stricken families that are desperate for more financial help. Most of these players live their whole lives in poverty stricken homes without heat, lights, and in many cases food. Who is the NBA to say that these players with there good given ability and all thee hours the have practiced to become such elite athletes, now have to wait another year to choose the path of there own lives? Once a person turns eighteen in the eyes of the law they are an adult and therefore aloud to create there own lifestyle for themselves, this rule strips them of that right. One of the reasons why the league has made this rule is to prevent immature acts, such as any type of law breaking. A reason that it is a positive for these young athletes to go pro right out of high school is the teaching these players get from NBA coaches ( Chris lawlor Para 3). By jumping to the pros these players get a head start on the players the same age as them. In high school players don't get the best trainers and coaches advising them on what to do on and off the court. Also in high school players are not able to get extra access into gyms the way the pros do, so these players get all the time they need to practice and workout. To me, it seems that the league has such a negative stereotypical view on what these teenage players bring to the NBA's enterprise. One player that disproves all of this is Kevin Garnett. Kevin Garnett was drafted by the Minnesota Timber wolves in 1995 and is arguably the best high player ever to play in the NBA (Chylinsk, Patrick Para.4). Garnett's rise to superstardom is the formula that every high school player should follow. Garnett remained patient and worked hard to become one of the best power forwards (Rusnak, Frank Para 4) in the game. When he entered the league he sat on bench and watched the veteran players, and he slowly learned NBA style of basketball. Each year he gradually improved his game until he reached the elite level he is at today. Garnett also is one of the few players to not receive any type criminal record. He has proven to himself and the public to be a great role model and player; which usually does not happen without patience.

So of course there is people that totally disagree with my views on these high schoolers making this career move. Some experts say that theses players entering the league might have the potential to be a bust like for example Kwame Brown. Brown was a high school player that was drafted by the Washington Wizards in 2001. There was so much hype surrounded around him coming to the league, in fact many predicted him to be the next Shaquille O'Neal and also

be the next great dominate player in the NBA. Since he was drafted he has had a career average of just 8points a game ( Many think of him as one of the biggest NBA let downs in history. But at the same time if these players are such stereotypical let downs , then the general managers that draft them shouldn't. No one forces these teams to pay these players money, so if they draft a high school player and they don't become a star, then that is there own fault. Another argument against mine is that these player's images are bad for the league. For instance Kobe Bryant is an example of when things go wrong for teenagers going to the pros. Kobe Bryant is a high school phenomenon that was drafted from a local Philadelphia high school(Nick Prevenas Para 1). When he first came into a league he was considered a headstrong player, that was selfish and rather score points than win games (Sam Amico Para 5). Also from his years of being the youngest on the team, he developed a sort of anti- social personality. Bryant doesn't associate with any players off the court and he has caused tension between teammates. In 2003 Kobe Bryant was accused of raping a girl in a Colorado hotel. He was eventually acquitted of all charges, but many experts say that this incident may have never happen if he had gone to college and had been able to grow and mature into the proper young man ( Kevin Pelton Para 6).

To weaken that argument I can say that high school players are probably not only the most popular players, but also the most talented and exciting players in the league(Heather Young Para 3). For the 2002-2003 season, four straight to the NBA players were all in the top ten statistically. Kevin Garnett was rated number one, and Tracy McGrady was number four. Kobe Bryant was number five, and Jermaine O'Neal was ranked number ten. So 40% of the top ten ranked players in terms of efficiency rating never played a game of college ball, Points per game: three of the top-10 (including the #1 spot: McGrady, #2: Kobe, and #8: Garnett), Rebounds per game: two of the top-10 spots (including the #2 spot: Garnett, and #4 Jermaine O'Neal) Triple doubles: four of the top-10 spots (including the #1 spot: Garnett, #2: Kobe, #8: McGrady, and also tied at #8: Jermaine O'Neal) (Chylinsk, Patrick Para.4). Needless to say, these guys are impact



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