What They’re Saying: Trey Burke and the NBA

Dylan Burkhardt
Michigan at Nebraska 4

Trey Burke and his family announced last week that they are examining NBA draft possibilities. Burke submitted paperwork to receive feedback from the NBA draft undergraduate committee and plans to make his next decision at some point after receiving that feedback.  As expected, Burke’s announcement of a possible announcement has generated its fair share of media frenzy. Here’s a round up of what scouts, advisors – a list that includes Satch Sullinger, Tim Hardaway Sr. and Darius Morris among others – and an array of other people are saying about Burke and his NBA options.

Names linked to full articles with additional quotes.

Satch Sullinger:

“You don’t look at what’s outside,” Satch Sullinger said Saturday, before Jared was to play in the Elite Eight for Ohio State. “We didn’t look at what was outside, we looked at what was inside of our son. At 19 years old being out there with money, we felt like we weren’t ready. His game may (have been) ready. We encouraged him, (but) it still was his choice. We encouraged him (that) he needed to stay. Hopefully, Trey makes the best decision for him.”

Darius Morris:

“I told him how to go about it and not to listen to everybody, but get honest opinions, which Coach (John) Beilein will do an excellent job of assisting him,” Morris said. “It’s exciting, but at the same time, it’s a very delicate process because a lot of thoughts are going through your head and you want to gather the best information you can to make a very important decision.”

Jonathan Givony:

“In terms of him as an NBA prospect, players in his mold are definitely in vogue right now: very quick, very aggressive, shot creators that can also shoot the three and also know how to run a team and can get other people involved. That’s in demand right now,” Givony said. “We personally weren’t expecting him to be in this draft considering that you don’t see a lot of 5-11 guys end up one-and-done. I think he might be the first.

Tim Hardaway Sr.:

“Teams are looking for an athletic point guard that can penetrate, make plays, find guys in traffic, run the offense and definitely play good defense,” Hardaway said. “Trey is somewhat like (Clippers guard) Chris Paul but a little bit quicker.”

NBA Draft Blog:

Burke will be a NBA player one day, but he isn’t ready yet to make the jump.  His ability to run the pick and roll will be attractive to teams, as well as his ability to knock down jumpers, but he is small, his defense needs a lot of work and he will need to focus on being more of a distributor than scorer at the next level.  If he was to come out now, I say he would probably go in the late first-high second round (25-40) range.  There have been quotes recently about this draft lacking point guards, which may lead underclassmen to declare.  Teams are not going to pick a point guard just because they may need one and there is a certain amount available.  They will pick them because they are available and can help the team.  I think it will be another year or more before Burke is ready to help a NBA team.

The deadline to withdraw from the NBA Draft is April 10th but players have up until April 29th to declare for the draft. The NBA undergraduate committee is required to provide feedback by April 6th.

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  • mbball

    “Trey is somewhat like (Clippers guard) Chris Paul but a little bit quicker.”  I’m a big Trey fan but I think this statement by TH Senior is inaccurate.  I think Chris Paul is much quicker than Trey. 

    • Dr_ZC

      Well, i feel that THS has spoken like a father, rather than an NBA talent/agent here. This year was supposed to be THJ’s year to shine. He was supposed to have the ball in his hands with the clock down. Instead it was Tray taking the last shot. With Tray gone and THJ staying, it will be THJ’s team, and his season to shine. 

      • CaliWolverine

        I would say he’s definitely biased, but not in that way…the player’s families get so close, his opinion sounds more like that proud uncle that thinks his nephew can do no wrong, than seeing him as a competitor to THJ’s stats (especially when he personally knows how important a PG is to everyone’s play and has to know THJ would be hurt by not having Trey as a ball handler next year)

    • robpollard

      Yeah, that comment by TH Senior is ridiculous.  Trey is quick, but he’s more shifty/smart in taking angles than “Wow, is he quick!”

      But if we’re making Chris Paul comparisons, Chris Paul stayed 2 years.  So I’m fine if Trey does that.

      • Jaysmith1114

        Being quicker then Chris Paul doesn’t mean he is as good as CP3, I’m quicker than Shaq but it doesnt  that I’m 2% the player he is. 

        • robpollard

          Fine except a) Burke is not quicker than Chris Paul and b) quickness is an extremely important attribute in a point guard; not so much in a center (so whether you are quicker than a 7 ft 2”, 350 lb Shaq is irrelevant).  Plus, I’m willing to bet 100 dollars you are not quicker than Shaq was in his first 15 years (late high school until he was about 30). Unless you could beat him down the courting doing this, 
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=riV3hvW8M64 or this 
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cAglVkIIy0Y – then I stand corrected.

    • gpsimms

      Tim Hardaway Senior goes to the Fred Jackson school of talent scouting.  THJr, I’d say, is like a mix of a better jumping Michael Jordan and a better shooting Reggie Miller all tied up in the body of a more muscular Ben Wallace.

  • YpsiTuckyBoy

    The NBA Draft Blog sounds exactly right, particularly on the defensive comments. When you’re not even the best defender on your team, an NBA leap probably isn’t a great idea unless you’re fantastic on the offensive side of the ball. Believe or not, NBA GM’s care about defensive prowess.

    • Dr_ZC

      It occurred to me that the perimeter passing and shelfishness this year was not there.  Last year there were cases where the team was giving up good shots for much better shots by making the extra pass. Burke is a good shooter, and I am sure he had to take many of the shots himself, due to he slumb of Smot and THJ. So, yes, he was a scorer first, and a passer second, due to circumstances.    

      • serious

         I enjoy shellfish as well.

        • Dr_ZC

          Ooops… I guess two wrongs do not make one right. Replace seafood with selflessness

  • mitch

    If he leaves, I will be shocked and pissed off.  Please stay Trey!

  • LexLuger

    He’ll stay.  Smart to get all the info for him and his folks, though.

  • AC1997

    “His ability to run the pick and roll will be attractive to teams….”

    On the one hand that is an accurate statement because the Michigan offense uses a ton of pick-and-roll so he’s very familiar with it and I agree that NBA teams will like that. 

    On the other hand, I feel like many teams were able to severely neutralize Burke on the pick-and-roll with the hard hedge and our offense was crippled when they did.  Meanwhile Morris was far better at using it, was 6’4″ tall, and was a slightly better defender.  And yet he can’t even stick on the roster of the Lakers – a team extremely desperate for a competent PG. 

    There are really only 64 professional PG jobs in the leage (maybe a few more for teams that keep three true PGs on their roster).  That’s stiff competition considering the number of people in each draft, the foreign players, stars like Rose and Paul who play a majority of minutes, and the veterans who are there to play a few minutes in relief. 

    My opinion is that unless you have a shot at a big contract and will contend to be a starter, why give up your college experience and rush yourself into the cutthroat world of hanging on to those last few bench spots in the NBA?  Enjoy it while it lasts.

  • davis104

    I think the better pro comparison for Trey is Damon Stoudamire and he was a four year player, All-American who averaged almost 23 points per game before the draft. We’ll see. I think he needs two years more, but I don’t know anything and I’m not Trey Burke. 

  • Mpartington

    We are utterly, utterly screwed it he leaves. Season down the drain, practically. Who the heck could run the point? Eso?

    • Michaeltheorignal

      We aren’t utterly screwed but we will certainly have a much, much tougher go (imagine had bad we would have been this year without Trey).  So, what do you all think about preseason rankings with and without Trey?

      I saw with Trey and the recruits coming in, minus Smot we are a preseason #15

      Without Trey and the recruits coming in, minus Smot we are a preseason #30-35.

      • Schillerg

        I have to ask this..does anyone truly believe that IF IF Trey leaves, we won’t have at least 1 and probably 2 more point guards in the fold next years, whether they’re 5th year kids(Travis Wood-like), true frosh(DeLaValle) or kids whose coaches left for another program?? IF Trey leaves Eso will not bwe the starting point next year in conference. I’ll bet anyone on that but I hope it doesn’t have to be discussed in about a month 

        • Quaint06

          I’m sure we’d get somebody, but he might not be that spectacular and may not pick up on the system quickly enough (or then again, he may). But I think it’s more likely that Burke will come back.

      • Hail

        I think we’ll be higher then preseason #15 if Trey comes back. That’s where we were this year with an unproven Burke. I gotta believe we start in the top 10 for rankings, probably somewhere from #8-#10. We’ll be big ten favorites along with Indiana.

        • BlueRev

           Yeah, that’s what I’m thinking. IU top 5, us top 10.

          • Hail

            Assuming Zeller comes back for IU, yeah I think you’re right based on their Sweet 16 run. I think they get the higher ranking, but bias aside, I’d still take our squad over theirs with everyone back.

  • DB

    TH Sr. obviously went to the Fred Jackson school of player evaluation.

  • Polsci

    My 2 cents…. A) I love Burke and have no problem with him checking things out.  B) There is no way he is leaving because he won’t be drafted, if he does. C) If he were to leave, we would not be screwed because we would just go back to JB’s classic 2 guard offense where having a “true” point isn’t that important. 

    Again, just my 2 cents (or maybe 3 cents)

  • rlcBlue

    Burke gets honorable mention AP All-American. For reference, the other guys I recognize as point guards on the list:

    2nd team:
    Isaiah Canaan

    3rd team:
    Damian Lillard
    Kendall Marshall
    Tyshawn Taylor

    Honorable Mention
    Matthew Dellavedova
    Pierre Jackson
    Scott Machado
    Jordan Taylor
    Caspar Ware
    Nate Wolters

    The thing that worries me about the THS comment on Burke’s quickness is this: I had assumed that once Trey got away from the agents and sycophants and got feedback from people who are professional talent evaluators, he would learn that he’s not ready for the NBA. But Hardaway is a paid scout for the Heat, isn’t he? How many other pro scouts are as confused as he is? It only takes a few…

  • A2JD

    More feedback from draft experts (via the Detroit free press)

    ESPN.com draft analyst Chad Ford says Burke should return to U-M for another season.”Teams will take flyers late in the first round on (players) with special athleticism or size for their position. Burke has neither,” Ford wrote in an e-mail. “There is a dearth of point guards right now in the draft, which helps him. But I currently have 11 other point guards ranked ahead of him. Unless he just has dominating workouts, I think the second round is his ceiling right now.”Added Aran Smith, who runs nbadraft.net: “I haven’t heard any scouts mention his name as a first-rounder. I saw him play in Maui, and he was impressive; he’s got that take-charge mentality. But he’s not projected a first-rounder. Not even close. … He’s interesting for the future and, in two to three years, he could be a first-rounder.”

  • gobluemd16

    Honestly, I didn’t want to make a rash comment in anger after Trey decided to test the waters, so I have waited to cool down especially after the three transfers.  I think that once a player, especially who has been dreaming of going to the NBA, has the thought or has heard they have a chance of being drafted, they are looking to hear anything that confirms their wishes.  I feel like if Trey hears there is any possibility of being draft late 1st or 2nd, he goes.  I believe it is in his best interest to come back to school especially because a 5-11 NBA rookie will at BEST be on the end of the bench ala Morris.  He really has so much room to grow.  He was fantastic this season, yes, but he was turnover prone at times, his defense has room for improvement, and his production definitely fell at the end of the season.  I really do think losing him halts the program’s progress in terms of postseason success, there is no sugar coating it, so for the fans’ sake let’s hope he makes an intelligent and informed decision.  I don’t think he is a first round pick, even with the dearth of guards in this draft.  Michigan basketball can still be really really special next year, even with the departure of Smotrycz, Brundidge, and Christian, but we need Burke for this to happen.

  • Champswest

    I think some people are overestimating our next year’s team.  Even if Trey stays, we are losing 3 of our top 6 players, with a combined 10 years of experience (much of it as starters).  We may be replacing guys with more skilled players and taller, but we will be very young.  Top 15 to start the season will be an overrating.  We could be there by season’s end though.

    • Guest

      Right. Because ‘experience’ is what Kentucky has that no one else does… Totally overrated in college hoops.
      This team can be very good next year. 

      • dustindbo

        Except Michigan isn’t getting the 1st, 4th, and 8th ranked high school seniors in the country. Our recruits coming in are good, but Kentucky is on another level.

        • A2JD

          But we’ll also have 2 talented Juniors and (if Trey returns) a very talented Sophomore as leaders.

          • Hail

            I think people are forgetting that McGary is coming in basically as a Sophomore. He’s older and he’s played top notch competition, so he’ll be fine.

            I don’t think people are overhyping this recruiting class either. I think most realize that what’s coming in is what we were lacking to get us over the top. If Burke comes back, you have your two scorers with him and THj. So none of the freshmen have to come in and make a huge impact. If McGary can be physical, if Robinson can play athletic (slasher, hustle), and if Staukas can hit a few shots then yes, that’s a Top 10 team.

        • Jeff

          Exactly dustin. Experience is overrated only if you are bringing in three top-10 players every single year and I only see one program doing that. For the rest of college basketball experience matters.

    • maxwell’s demon

      Don’t agree. If Burke stays and we get Amedeo I think we’re a top 10ish team and B10 favorite. We’d still have one of the best PGs in college basketball, a potentially very dangerous Hardaway, and a Morgan/Horford combo returning. So then you’re talking about Stu being replaced by Amedeo/Stauskas and Novak/Smot by GRIII and McGary. We’re going to be significantly bigger and likely going to have great depth at every positon aside from PG where we’ll have to just ride Burke (there are worse situations to be in).

    • A2JD

      I think if Burke returns, we’ll have the kind of talent (plus we’ll have the big man/shot-blocker we’ve been lacking) that can make a Final Four.

      • Jeff

        To be honest, I think fans in general are overhyping this class. I think they’ll be good, but there will be plenty of freshman growing pains. To be honest, I can see them as final four caliber in two years if nobody leaves early, but given Burke’s flirtation with NBA this year, that seems unlikely.

        • maxwell’s demon

          The thing is not everyone of these players has to come in and be a big impact player next year. I really hope we can get Amedeo because then that means we really just need either him or Stauskas to give us solid production (neither has to be a star). And then we need to get good production out of at least one of our 2 ~5 stars at the 4. That’s really not unrealistic.

    • Jeff

      If you believe what State fans say, Lucas was never quite the same after his injury. Watching him play the last two years, there may be some truth to that. His jumpshot got much better, but he didnt’ seem to be quite as explosive.

  • A State Fan

    If Burke hears he could be a first rounder from reputable sources (sounds like he isn’t), then he should go now. Otherwise he should wait until next year and go then, but dont wait longer. The fact is the longer a guy like Burke waits (similar to Kalin Lucas), the more guys who will be NBA age who are bigger and more athletic. There is a VERY small window of opportunity for him to get a chance at the NBA.

    Improve your defense and shoot 40+% from three Trey, then go get your money.

  • Justin

    Hardaway Sr. plays the role of Fred Jackson this one…seriously, quicker than Chris Paul???

  • FLiPCiTyBLuE

    Personally i have compared him to A.I since the jump. I think Trey is every bit as quick as CP3, not as good(yet) but as quick if not quicker all day. TB3!

    • A2JD

      Not as quick, not quite as big as Chris Paul.  Also, nowhere near as explosive as AI and, thankfully, not the shot-jacking, ball hog that Iverson was either.

      • FLiPCiTyBLuE

        As quick, will be as big (as CP3) but not ready yet for the league. Always ready to take, make or create a shot just like A.I. Fearless taking it to big’s just like A.I…thats my opinion and you won’t change that. 

        • mbball

          quicker than denard?

  • Kylegerber

    I am a big michigan fan, but as a sports finatict, i think he is not ready yett, he could learn so much at michigan and with the recruit class coming in he can do alot his sophmore year. I say stay

  • Tenz23

    Did anyone remember when D Morris was projected to go in the first round around 14th pick because it was considerd a weak draft class.  He ended up going 44th(not sure if that the exact number but it was some where around that number)  to a team that doesnt play him and doesnt give him a chance to play….  That is exactly what going to happen if trey goes now, maybe even worse because D morris had the advantage of being a strongs and tall guard which trey is not.  I just dont want him to go and get in the draft have all these people who are making random predictions (key word RANDOM, because no one actually know for sure) say that he will get drafted late first round early second round and end up not even getting drafted because he was overlooked. He had a good season this year but if he stays for next year, Michigan will have a stacked team that can help him looked and play better.  He should stay because he needs MICHIGAN and MICHIGAN needs TREY 

    • Scott1222

      Agreed…just that simple…every morning I look and hope that after getting the feedback him and his family requested (as they should) he fully understands that next yr he should return and lead this team to greatness….while gettn a bunch of national exposure…GO BLUE!!

  • Scott1222

    Watchn the McDonalds All American Game and commentators talking about when players should and should NOT enter the draft….immediately Darius Morris was the topic of quick discussion….

  • Fuwaadreynolds

    With no doubt trey can go to the league an become a factor . Like a darren williams for the Net . Maybe late first . But he was a great high school point gaurd . an has a thriller season for Michigan

    • Scott1222

      I don’t agree respectively…I believe mayb 1 day he will and can b a factor at the next level…but by no means immediately as ur suggesting…I bleed UM bball and think TREY had an unbelievable yr and will make it to the next level…he’s not even projected in the top 10 PG declaring…Notes were made on him improving his defensive game and also being able to distribute the ball…obviously w the shooting slumps of his surrounding cast he was aggressive w being the go to guy…however w a more athletic recruiting class and THJ returning w a vengeance I truly believe he needs ATLEAST 1 more year at UM to polish his game and improve on the feedback him and his family requested….looking forward to TREY back next year and putting this University of Michigan basketball program back to an elite status! Go BLUE!!

  • Scott1222

    Appears Ohio coach Groce takes head coaching job at Illinois…I’m sure our returning boys and newbys won’t mind taking it to the Illini team that much harder this upcoming year…didn’t he have a good returning class..but I guess his salary of 250k didn’t matter when he can jump up a bit to 1.25 million….

  • Mistermagickal

    IF Burke was to leave this year, it would be the 3rd straight season our best player left prematurely from a basketball standpoint…

    One major influencing factor that I did not see mentioned in any of the comments I read was the NEED for $$$.  I’m not absolutely positive, but pretty sure the Burke family is financially secure enough to not need a large supplemental income from Trey’s basketball career ASAP.  I’m positive it was the primary factor in Manny’s decision and a major factor in Morris’ decision .It was obvious Morris was not a 1st Rd pick.  How can a PG have no 3 point accuracy and a sub par outside jumper and play in the NBA consistently??  If you understand the sport of basketball, you also know the one position where athletic ability in regards to speed, quickness, and leaping ability  is much much more important than height is PG.  If Morris was could run, jump, and shoot like Burke he would have been a top 10 pick.  

    Burke will be a successful NBA PG if he continues his progression, Burke has the drive and hunger that Manny and Morris also did not have to become better all around complete players.  Burke will be in the gym as much as he can all off season. 

  • Marktaggart

    i dont think trey burke should go yet u are still young and u will be ready someday but u are not yet u need to stay a develope a better game

  • Markltaggart

    if trey burke leaves it will hurt michigan badly