Tim Hardaway Jr. enters NBA Draft

Dylan Burkhardt

Michigan 78, VCU 53 - 30
Bryan Fuller

Tim Hardaway Jr. will forgo his senior season and enter the NBA Draft. Hardaway has a press conference scheduled for 3 pm this afternoon.

“After talking it over with my family, the coaching staff, and others in my support system, I have decided to pursue my dream of playing in the NBA,” said Hardaway. “I have appreciated everyone’s support and patience while I made this decision. It has always been a dream of mine to play in the NBA and I feel that I am ready to work toward this dream.

Hardaway is the second Michigan player to enter the NBA Draft early this season, joining Trey Burke. Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary, both projected as first round picks, have yet to announce their college decisions.

Hardaway averaged 14 points and five rebounds in his junior season and 14 points per game over his three year career in Ann Arbor.

  • Ugh. Really? He is like two hours from making an announcement. Let the kid speak.

    (Talking to Adrian, not you Dylan.)

    • ChocoJoe

      Yea, seriously. Though I believe it, I can’t imagine that his report is official.

    • Eh, it’s the job of a reporter. And if you don’t think the decision has been made two hours before the press conference…

      • I hope he’s doing his job, because to me it sounds like an educated guess.

    • Brad S

      I agree, it’s one of the biggest moments of the kids life. I don’t doubt that it’s true but let him announce it on his own at least

  • robpollard

    Hope for Tim’s sake this isn’t true. He’s not a 1st rounder and it will be tough for him stick with an NBA team and get any meaningful minutes next year.

    Good luck to him – hope I’m wrong and he has a nice NBA career. But I’m thinking it is more likely he’ll have an NBA career like Manny Harris, and if that’s the case, why leave early when next year it could be “his” UM team?

    • MusketRebellion

      Because his draft stock isn’t going to be higher next year when he’s a year older and the draft is much, much deeper. This is his chance to get drafted, why not take it?

      • deSal

        nailed it. plus he is actually projected late first / early second. I know early second isn’t guaranteed but teams don’t just punt those picks, they’re always looking for the next Chandler Parsons / Will Barton. Even if he does spend some time in the D-league (a knock I keep hearing) he’s still developing his game, a few lottery picks have spent time in the D-League this year. All four guys should enter the draft (imo) granted in the short term it would be a program set-back, but I trust JB and think this will ultimately help in the long run in recruiting having put 5 guys in the NBA the past 3 years.

        • MusketRebellion

          Even with next year’s draft being deeper, if McGary and Robinson stay and play to their potential they will be lottery locks next year, so I hope for their sake (and, obviously, for Michigan’s) that they stay. Then again, I’m not the one with millions of dollars on the line.

      • robpollard

        His “chance” this year is to be drafted in the 2nd round, and if that’s the case, it’s better to be a free-agent as it’s not a guaranteed contract and he could pick his team. I also assume he doesn’t need the money, so he I would think he could delay the start of his pro (be it NBA or International) career (unlike some players who, regardless of draft position, need to go pro in order to make money for their families).

        And who’s to say he wouldn’t improve next year? He got better this year (e.g., as a finisher around the rim), but he still needs to work on a lot (dribbling, shooting off the dribble, consistent defense, rebounding) in order to be an NBA product.

        Finally, the “weak draft this year” argument was the one for Darius Morris. He was a 2nd rounder, who barely plays, even with all the Lakers injuries.

        • MusketRebellion

          Barely plays = still making NBA money. He’s on the team and even Kobe has come out and said good things about him. Plus, from some of the articles I’ve read the Lakers’ fan base seems to think he should be seeing more minutes. I think Darius is doing alright.

          • robpollard

            Well, THJ doesn’t need to make ‘NBA money’, and I assume it will still be there a year from now (I don’t know Darius’ situation, so perhaps he needed the NBA money a year earlier; it still is a bad sign that you barely play on a team that has suffered serious injuries to pretty much everyone in front of you).

            Darius (and Manny Harris, who will likely only play two years in the NBA total after leaving his junior year, and is now playing in Ukraine) will both make more money than they know what to do with, I assume. My point is based on basketball:
            I haven’t seen any good source which says he’s a RD1 pick, which doesn’t surprise me as he doesn’t have an NBA ready game at this point. I would think it would be more in his short-term interests (playing on a national title contender at UM as a senior would be a blast, I assume) and long-term interests (since he’s a 2nd rd pick anyway, why worry about a stronger draft next year – he has a chance to show skill improvement and leadership; instead he’ll likely be riding the pine for the Milwaukee Bucks).

            Doesn’t matter anyway – I’ll still wish him luck. Just pointing out the NBA will still be there next year and unlike Burke, THJ has a lot of room to improve.

    • umumum

      I know it has been said before, but it bears repeating. Tim has a myriad of advisers infinitely more qualified to assess his prospects than you, I or anyone else here. Timmy has work to do to make it in the NBA, but he may be able to do it as well if not better at the next level. Thanks Tim, you’ve been a great Wolverine.

  • CDeSana

    Best of luck to THjr; he will be missed. I think THjr was probably the first rising star that coach B landed just in time before the powerhouses of the time noticed. This will probably lead to Stauskas moving to the SG spot and GRIII moving to the SF spot with Donnal sliding into the PF spot.

    All positive in my opinion.

    • Mark Worthley

      GR3 is coming back?

    • Jeff

      Actually, I think Morris was the first one. The amazing thing is that Beilein has pretty much done it every year other than his first year: Morris then Hardaway then Burke then Robinson. Remember that when Robinson committed before his junior year he was an unheralded 3-star. Actually, Irvin and Walton have shot up the rankings since they committed. The man has an amazing eye for talent.

      • CDeSana

        I was never a D Morris fan

        • Mattski

          Why, are you not a Michigan fan? Did he not set the single-season assist record his sophomore year? Or were you gifted with clairvoyance, and aware before he left that he was headed to the NBA?

          Dig out the end of the year highlights from this site from two years ago and watch them, then tell me you don’t admire DMo’s play.

  • Chaddy

    The reason he’s probably leaving is because GRIII and McGary are leaving as well!!!

  • The silver mclining

    Blake McLimans 5th Year? I mean, why not?

    • gpsimms

      Ha. McLining. You’re totally right, though. With all the walk-ons graduating he will at the very least be a scout team star.

  • Mr_Sledge

    Has anyone else noticed the shocking similarities that this last year’s team has had with the ’97 Arizona team? I haven’t finished completely vetting this out, but here’s a few things I noticed:

    1) They finished 5th in the Pac-10
    2) They were a 4 seed in the SE bracket
    3) They beat 3 #1 seeds to win it all… we fell 7 pts short
    4) I believe they all came back next year, but the following year draft picks: Bibby, Dickerson, Simon (2 first rounders and a 2nd) = Burke, Robinson, Hardaway… (I blame this difference on the changes in NBA drafting over the last decade)

    I’d love to see someone blow the comparisons out more if they felt inclined. I’m interested but don’t have the patience…

    • sshow

      We only beat 1 #1 seed…Louisville would have only been #2

  • gobluemd16

    Well, looks like I am going to have to change my avatar soon..

  • rlcBlue

    Best of luck, Timmy – thanks for everything.

  • Gordon

    Hate to be a downer, but am I the only one who thought he cost us the Title Game? He was the only player on our team who consistently took bad shots (unless you count Burke, but he would make his). I know he did a lot to contribute outside of shooting, but I don’t think it’s crazy to think that Zak Irvin can be an improvement over Hardaway. That said, if GR3 and/or McGary leave, we’re in serious trouble.

    • CDeSana

      Team effort win or lose but he certainly had a couple of turnovers in the first half that helped the comeback. All said we were out coached; they should never had gotten off so many open 3’s to make the comeback.

    • Mattski

      Clearly, you weren’t watching over the last three years, then, to see how many games he helped win for Michigan to put the team in a position to vie for the championship in the first place.

      • rlcBlue

        Clearly we would not have lost the NCAA championship game if not for Tim Hardaway Jr. – without him we might have been in the fricking NIT.

        • Matzio

          how did you even manage to combine that many double negatives? It’s like a grammatical maze.

      • Gordon

        Certainly agree that he won us the OSU game this year and the MSU game a couple years ago. We certainly couldn’t have made it where we did this year without him, but I was frustrated by his lack of ability to recognize his own limitations — mainly shooting jump shots off the dribble. Two years ago, and to some extent last year, we needed him to take contested shots because he was surrounded by guys who shouldn’t have been on a B1G roster. This year he didn’t adjust.

        I don’t think we’ll be better off without him, but he’s relatively expendable with Irvin in the wing.

        • David

          Get out of this thread. “Relatively expendable,” sheesh. Dude would have been our best player next year. Give him some credit.

          • Gordon

            I try to avoid internet arguments. I’m using my real name, and I’m a proud U of M grad who had basketball season tickets in ’07 and ’08 when we were terrible, so I can certainly appreciate everything Hardaway has done for us. But do you know what relative means? I mean Hardaway is less crucial to next year’s success than GR3 and McGary are.

            Maybe this is the wrong place for these thoughts, and I’m just trying to make myself feel better about him leaving, but I don’t think what I’m saying is totally off base.

          • Mattski

            It’s the “expendable” part of your post rather than the relative part that I find a little objectionable.

  • ChathaM

    As someone who watches very little NBA ball, but tons of college ball, this week has been painful. I hope that the eventual Robinson and McGary decisions will ease my pain a bit. I wish Burke and Hardaway all the best, and I wish I could say that I can’t wait to watch them in the NBA. But, I can’t, only because I know that I won’t.

  • MGoTweeter

    Congrats Tim and best of luck in the NBA! Michigan will miss your energy and leadership. I will also miss your pregame hype scream.

  • Mattski

    Would love it if Timmy got some of the same treatment here that we’ve given Trey recalling his best games, etcetera. We fans sit around and bloviate about these kids’ NBA possibilities ad nauseum, usually based on what they’ve done for us in the last several games; it’s always good to be reminded of some sold facts.

  • NANAandLIZZYfanatic

    Really hoping this doesn’t mean we are also going to lose GRIII and McGary. Seriously I don’t know how they are getting projected so high.

    I mean GRIII hasn’t been aggressive and has been 3rd/4th option. If he gets drafted I can’t see him getting much time and could see him out of league within a few years.
    If he comes back he can be the main option. Which would probably get him more money next year and even if he didn’t get drafted as high next year, it would extend his career IMO. If he doesn’t look for his shot on a college team I don’t understand how he would suddenly look for it w/ better players around him. How is he getting projected so high?!

    McGary if he does what he did in March for a whole season idc if the next class is stronger, I don’t see how he wouldn’t get drafted higher.

  • Indiana_Matt

    I remember when it was between him and Casey Prather and then Prather committed to Florida. I don’t recall Hardaway being rated as highly, but I sure am glad things worked out how they did. Prather seems like a good kid in a good program but he averaged 6 pts a game last year and was in double figure minutes for the first time as a junior. Hardaway came in and upped our talent level from day one. Honorable mention all-conference as a freshman. Double figure scorer all 3 years, All-Big Ten the last two seasons. While struggling at times with inconsistency, his improvement this year was amazing. Would be great to watch him one more year, but honestly don’t know that he’ll improve his pro stock much more. Always liked the kid and wish him the best!

  • Matzio

    Although he had many ups and downs, he was really the unsung hero of a lot of games. Good luck to him, he had a great career and he should take advantage of his inflated stock right now. I think he could end up at the end of the first round given his family’s connections to the NBA (scouts in particular).

    And I don’t think he lost us the championship game as someone else suggested. It was a battery of things that lost us that game. It’s one of those games where things just didn’t go our way, and that’s that. Timmy would sometimes play too cerebral on the offensive end. I like our prospects to take his place next year though. I think we are in for an exciting year for Zak Irvin and Walton. Beilein has consistently shown how guards flourish in his system — our recruiting will hopefully continue to reflect this.