USC’s Bronny James, son of Lakers star LeBron James, invited to 2024 NBA Draft Combine

USC's Bronny James, son of Lakers star LeBron James, invited to 2024 NBA Draft Combine - CBSSports.com

USC freshman Bronny James, the son of Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James, was one of 78 players who were invited to participate in the NBA Draft Combine. This year’s combine takes place from May 12-19 at Wintrust Arena and the Marriott Marquis in Chicago.

Bronny James announced last month that he was entering the NBA Draft and the transfer portal. With the Lakers season coming to a close after a loss to the Denver Nuggets in the NBA Playoffs, the elder James provided an update on the pending decision his oldest son will have to make next month.

“I just want to get home to the family honestly,” James said. “… One of my boys is deciding if he’s going to enter the draft or go back to school. I got another kid [Bryce James] that’s playing AAU ball right now and my daughter [Zhuri James] is playing volleyball — and my wife [Savanah James] is doing so many great things, so it’s about family right now.”

James will have until May 29 — the withdrawal deadline set by the NCAA — to decide to remain in the draft or return for his sophomore season. The NBA has a later withdrawal deadline (June 16) but the NCAA has its own set of rules that states the deadline is 10 days after the NBA Combine ends. The 2024 NBA Draft is June 26-27. 

Bronny James gets NBA Combine invite that could change course of LeBron's future - The Mirror US

The Athletic reported on Monday that the Lakers are “open to the prospect” of drafting Bronny. The Lakers will have the 17th overall pick in the 2024 NBA Draft, which could be conveyed to the Pelicans as part of the Anthony Davis trade in 2019. Los Angeles holds its own second-round pick in this summer’s draft.

The former four-star recruit played in 25 games for the Trojans after making his college debut on Dec. 10 against Long Beach State less than five months after going into cardiac arrest during a summer workout at USC. James made six starts during the 2023-24 season and averaged 4.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.1 assists.

“I’ve had a year with some ups and downs but all added to growth for me as a man, student and athlete,” James wrote on Instagram. “I’ve made the decision to enter the NBA Draft while maintaining my college eligibility, and will also be entering the NCAA transfer portal. Thank you to USC for an amazing freshman year, and as always thankful for my family, friends, doctors, athletic trainers and fans for their support.”

James missed USC’s overseas trip to Greece and Croatia for a three-game summer tour and was absent from the start of fall workouts because of the cardiac arrest incident. After his minute restriction was lifted in January, James showcased his potential as both a playmaker and defender in an expanded role.

James’ future came into question last month when rumors surfaced that the 19-year-old would enter the transfer portal and explore his college options.

“I don’t know where it came from,” LeBron James said after the Lakers beat the Raptors 128-111 in Toronto. “But at the end of the day, Bronny is his own man. He has some tough decisions to make. When he’s ready to make those decisions, he’ll let us all know. But as his family, we’re going to support whatever he does.”

Bronny James’ NBA Draft projection

James’ draft stock is considered a mystery. His overall stats weren’t great this season, but that won’t prevent a respective team from drafting him. The 2024 NBA Draft class is a mystery because it’s one of the weaker draft classes at the top in nearly a decade. That could ultimately benefit James and convince him to declare for the draft if a team wants to take a swing on a prospect with upside.

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