The NBA could be making a big decision in the future. It is a decision that could potentially change the dynamic of the league. According to reports, the NBA has formally submitted a proposal to lower the draft-eligible age to 18 from 19. The NBA submitted its proposal to the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA). The proposal could potentially end the “one-and-done” rule used in college basketball.
The “one-and-done” rule was established in 2005. It requires high school basketball players to play college basketball for a year before declaring for the NBA. In other words, high school phenoms must play in the NCAA for a year before going pro. For example, Duke University currently has a phenom within their program with projected number one pick Zion Williamson.
Williamson has played well with Duke, but he suffered a knee injury on Wednesday. In the Duke-UNC game, Williamson’s shoe exploded and caused a knee injury and did not return for the rest of the game. Duke lost to UNC 88-72.
Williamson suffered a mild knee sprain and is currently listed as day-to-day. He is out for Duke’s game against Syracuse on Saturday. The injury is minor, but could have been worse. Now, there is a debate of whether Williamson should sit out for the rest of the season or continue to play.
Some people, like Golden State Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins, think Williamson should do what is best for him. Cousins also spoke negatively of college basketball. A player like Williamson could play professionally but the “one-and-done” rule required a year of college before joining the league. If the injury was more severe, it could have affected his career. People against “one-and-done” argue this case, and the NBA is taking action.
The NBA submitted the proposal during All-Star Weekend. NBA commissioner Adam Silver also said the current age limit is not working for the league or college basketball. So, it is likely that change is coming.
As of right now, the new proposal would be in effect by the 2022 draft. Then, players 18 or older can declare for the draft.