Since he announced his intentions to test the NBA Draft waters, Tennessee point guard Jordan Bone hasn’t been appearing in many NBA Draft big boards and hasn’t popped up in any mock drafts.
Now, however, Bone’s name has finally appeared in a mock draft for the upcoming 2019 NBA Draft.
In Sports Illustrated’s most recent NBA mock draft, Bone is projected as a late second-round pick. Their mock draft lists Bone as the Los Angeles Clippers’ pick with the 55th overall pick in the second round. That would be the sixth-to-the-last pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.
On Sports Illustrated’s updated big board of prospects listing the top 100 players available for the draft, Bone comes in at No. 54, just missing out on the top 50.
“Bone gets a lot of credit among scouts for Tennessee’s impressive season, and it’s not impossible he ends up having the best NBA career of anyone on that roster,” Sports Illustrated’s Jeremy Woo writes of Bone. “He has real chops as a floor leader, has a good feel for where the ball needs to go, and could end up making an impact off someone’s bench in a Quinn Cook kind of sense. He won’t create a ton of offense for himself, Bone did a great job limiting turnovers, proved he’s capable of hitting big shots, and has become an intriguing sleeper going into the combine.”
The junior point guard received an invite to the 2019 NBA Combine along with his teammates Grant Williams and Admiral Schofield. Typically, there are only around 60-70 players invited to the combine every year, and those players are considered the top prospects heading into each draft. The large majority of the players who participate in the NBA Combine get drafted, and the fact that Bone picked up an invite bodes well for what scouts think of him.
Bone came into his own as a junior this past season for the Vols. He broke the school record for best assist-to-turnover ratio in a single season with a 2.91 ratio. He also finished with the third-most assists in a single season in school history with 215. He set career-highs in points per game (13.5), assists per game (5.8), rebounds per game (3.2), minutes per game (32.9), field goal percentage (46.5 percent), and free throw percentage (83.5 percent). In fact, Bone’s field goal shooting improved a whopping 7.4 percentage points from the previous season, and he nearly doubled his scoring output from his sophomore year, going from 7.3 points a game to 13.5 points a contest.
As for where Bone’s teammates are projected: Sports Illustrated has Grant Williams being selected 38th overall in the second round by the Dallas Mavericks, and Admiral Schofield is projected as the No. 45 overall pick to the Detroit Pistons.
The 2019 NBA Combine in Chicago begins on May 14th — the same day as the NBA Draft lottery — and lasts through May 19th. The NBA Draft itself is on June 20th.
With new rules in place that start for this upcoming NBA Draft, Bone and Grant Williams both could still return to school for their senior seasons after the draft if either or both of them end up not being selected. It’s highly likely that Williams will be drafted if he doesn’t remove his name from consideration before the May 29th deadline, but Bone isn’t nearly as much of a guarantee at the moment.
If Bone keeps his name in the NBA Draft pool and then doesn’t get drafted on June 20th, he has until 5 PM Eastern that following Monday (June 24th) to inform UT Athletics Director Phillip Fulmer of his intention to return to school. Bone could also pursue a career overseas or try his hand in the NBA G League.