Report: NBA To Allow In-Person Draft Workouts
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The NBA will allow in-person pre-draft workouts. According to ESPN’s draft expert Jonathan Givony, each team will get ten live workouts with draft-eligible players. The move is a radical change from the originally proposed virtual draft workouts the league outlined earlier in the draft process.
According to a memo obtained by Givony, team personnel will be allowed to observe traditional draft workouts with ten players in the city where the player is preparing for the draft.
“From October 16 to November 16th, teams may schedule ten visits of up to 4 1/2 hours with draft-eligible players for the purpose of in-person evaluations, interviews or medical evaluation, according to the memo,” Givony reported. “Each team will be allowed to send three team personnel and one physician to the city the player resides.”
Givony also reported that draft-eligible players may host multiple teams at their workout, though the team’s attendance would count towards one of their 10 workouts.
In addition to notifying the league of their intention to view a player’s workout, teams must show they have tested negative for COVID-19 leading up to the visit.
“Within 72 hours prior to any visit, all participants including players, trainers, team personnel, and physicians must undergo and return a negative COVID-19 result from an FDA-approved PCR test,” According to Givony. “Test results for team personnel must be provided to the league office for verification.”
The NBA will still host a virtual draft combine over the coming weeks as the top players in the draft report to league markets to undergo medical examinations, physical measurements, athletic testing, interviews, and basketball activities.
How In-Person Draft Workouts Impact The Utah Jazz
In recent seasons, the Utah Jazz have tried to work out as many players as possible during the traditional pre-draft process. The Jazz view the workouts as an opportunity to do additional research on players in case they become available as free agents down the road, even if they aren’t selected by the team in the draft.
For example, the Jazz revisited their pre-draft workout notes on Jordan Clarkson before acquiring the guard in exchange for Dante Exum last December.
The Jazz have regularly brought in more than 100 players leading up to the draft in recent seasons to build a wider rapport with players and their agents throughout the league. Now, that number will be limited to just ten.
As a result of trimming the number of players a team can view before the workout, some of the mystery involved in the workout process might be eliminated.
Whereas the Jazz could disguise their draft targets among the hundred-plus players they workout, they will now before forced to reveal their hand among the select few prospects they hope to select in the draft.
The 2020 NBA draft is set for November 18.