Moritz Wagner talks NBA Draft feedback, decision

Dylan Burkhardt

Moritz Wagner joined Duncan Robinson and Andrew Dakich on the Dak and Dunc show last night to discuss his decision to enter the NBA Draft.

“It doesn’t really mean a lot, other than just saying I look into being drafted and tell teams your name is out there,” he told his teammates on their podcast. “Other than that, it doesn’t mean anything. For two years now, there’s this rule that you can pull your name back out.”

Wagner also discussed the feedback that he received from the NBA undergraduate advisory board.

“Yeah, it’s definitely interesting, the feedback,” Wagner said. “Just sitting in the room and seeing somebody talking about your draft stock.

“I think, one year ago, and I was sitting at the same table talking about how I’m going to be on the court in college basketball and now I’m in this situation which I’m very grateful for and it’s a lot of fun, obviously, going through the process with the other guys, you guys and the coaching staff. Very happy.”

Wagner received his feedback from the NBA Draft Undergraduate Committee on Sunday afternoon before announcing his decision to enter the draft on Monday.

“It’s pretty interesting; it’s a business, dude,” he said of the committee’s feedback. “You have those certain ranges, and they’re going to tell you where you’re expected to be to get picked. I don’t want to go into this too deep. All of the sudden, you’re there talking about the NBA.”

As he reflected on the feedback, Wagner looked back to this time last year when he was still trying to emerge as a rotation player for the Wolverines.

“My confidence level increased a lot by being here with (Coach Sanderson). It gave me a huge confidence boost. I had a different mindset,” he said of his transformation. “As a freshman you come in just trying to figure out how to survive. You have to spend a lot of money and all of the sudden you aren’t at home anymore and your mom isn’t cooking you meals. You are supposed to play your best basketball and I wasn’t able to do that.”

Regardless of his draft stock, Wagner is easy to test his game against similar prospects in the NBA Draft Combine (if he’s invited) or during workouts.

“From my perspective, in college, you only have 30 games, you only play against 20-25 teams a year,” he said. “You don’t get a chance to compete with all of the players. The combine and workouts are, I think, a great opportunity to compete on a very high level.

Signing with a German or European team appears to be far from Wagner’s priority.

“I haven’t even thought about that,” Wagner said when asked if any teams back in Germany had reached out to try to sign him. “That is usual, but I think I’ve made very clear that I want to stay in college as long as possible.”

He’ll also have a busy schedule over the next several weeks. He’s planning to head back to Germany for a little over a week on April 21st before returning to Ann Arbor for the spring semester. He’ll spend time on campus working out with strength coach Jon Sanderson while also taking any workouts including potentially the NBA Draft combine from May 11th through 14th.

The deadline to withdraw from the NBA Draft for college athletes is May 24th.

Wagner also hinted that he’d like to tryout for the German Under-20 National Team this summer in the FIBA U-20 European Championships — which run from July 15th through 23rd — and would miss the summer term in Ann Arbor, if he returns to school, as those sessions would begin in mid-June.

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  • Tony DeMaria

    Sounds like he’s doing this more to go through the process and possibly learn what he needs to do to make it into the NBA. I don’t think he’s going to stay in, I think he likes being in college and also he believes that he can raise his stock higher with another year in the NBA.

    I more worry about losing Wilson because I think he doesn’t have the ceiling Mo has (although he might have a higher floor), and his stock might never be higher after the BT/NCAA tourney run. That sucks if I’m right because he needs another year at Michigan IMO. They both do.

    • gobluemd16

      100% right. Definitely got a strong impression that Moe intends to be back next year but is using this as a great experience. I also agree that DJ is far more likely to stay in the draft, and I am a bit worried he will (although if he has a 1st rd guarantee from a team, he probably should remain entered).

  • Ernie Silverthorn

    Anyone who knows me, knows I’m NOT a fan of “sports talk” radio or of sports “talking heads” on TV. I’m an exceptional talker myself, a great story teller, and pretty funny and I HATE (OK, dislike!) that ” sports talk radio” and “talking heads” type “talent” get paid to freaking talk! LOL! But Dak and Dunc are really good. And they don’t get paid! Yet. As I listened to them today it occurred to me that while they were interviewing Mo about his life vis a vis the NBA, in some ways they, too, were “trying out,” …for a career in “talk radio.” I think they are really good, and while I don’t like “talk radio,” I like them a lot! As for Moe, I just love the kid. I hope he comes back. I really do, because while I think he has a career in the NBA ahead of him, I think he has more work to do. And, I LOVE the fact that he is enjoying the college experience so much. Listening to these guys is just refreshing to me. They are college STUDENT athletes, emphasis on students. I think that’s what it should be all about. And it’s probably why I’m not a fan of the NBA or “professional” “talking heads.” For them, it’s pure joy, it’s love of the sport. It’s not about money. It’s about being kids and having fun!