Jordan Bone Announces He’s Staying in 2019 NBA Draft

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    (Photo via Anne Newman/RTI)

    Jordan Bone had until May 29th to make an official decision on his basketball future. A day before that deadline, he announced his intentions once and for all.

    Tennessee’s junior point guard posted a video on his Twitter account on Tuesday evening announcing that he will be keeping his name in the 2019 NBA Draft pool and will forgo his senior season at UT. Bone had until May 29th to withdraw his name from consideration if he wished to come back to Tennessee for his senior season. Instead, he announced on Tuesday night that he’ll be officially going pro.

    “First of all, I want to thank God. Without God, none of this is possible,” Bone begins. “The announcement that I have to make today is that I will continue to keep my name in the 2019 NBA Draft. It’s always been my dream as a kid, and I have the utmost confidence moving forward.”

    Bone was voted a Second-Team All-SEC performer after a breakout junior campaign with the Vols this past season. The 6-foot-3, 180-pound point guard from Nashville set a school record and finished with his name scattered across UT’s record books as a high-performing point guard.

    In his junior season, Bone set the program record for best assist-to-turnover ratio in a season with a 2.91 ratio. He also had the third-most assists in a single season with 215 as a junior. Along with his All-SEC honor, Bone was one of 10 finalists for the Bob Cousy National Point Guard of the Year award. He averaged 13.5 points, 5.8 assists, and 3.2 rebounds per game as a junior.

    But Bone never made it all about him while in college, and he held that same viewpoint in his video announcing his decision to stay in the draft.

    “The love and appreciation that I have for Vol nation is something that will never go away and I’ll always cherish,” Bone stated in his video. “Seeing my older brother (Josh Bone) wearing the orange and white as a kid is something that’s always been special to me. I’ve grown in so many ways at the university in the last three years as a teammate, athletically, and even as a Christian.

    “Hopefully we didn’t let Vol nation down.”

    Tennessee held the No. 1 ranking in men’s college basketball for four-straight weeks this season, the longest streak in school history. The Vols tied a program record with 31 wins during the 2018-19 season, and UT advanced to their first Sweet Sixteen in the NCAA Tournament since 2014.

    A lot of Tennessee’s offensive success was due to Bone’s growth as a point guard.

    Bone had three point/assist double-doubles as a junior after having none in his first two years as a Vol. He scored a career-high 27 points in Tennessee’s home victory over Kentucky on March 2nd, and he totaled eight or more assists in nine different games, including four games where he had double-digit assists.

    Bone was one of three Vols to participate in the 2019 NBA Draft Combine earlier this month. There, he turned heads with his impressive performances in several drills. Bone finished with the best time in the lane agility drill and the shuttle drill, and he had the best standing vertical leap among the 60-plus participants in attendance. He had the second-best max vertical jump and fourth-best three quarter sprint time.

    The list of people to thank isn’t a short one for Bone, and he made sure to give a shoutout to everyone who helped him during his three years in Knoxville.

    “I want to thank my family, my teammates, coach Rob Lanier, Desmond Oliver, Coach Barnes, Mike Schwartz, and (video coordinator/Director of Player Development) Bryan Lentz,” Bone added, “and also (strength and conditioning coach) Garrett Medenwald and (Senior Associate Director of Sports Medicine) Chad (Newman) for always believing in me and always trusting me through this process.

    “Vol nation, I love you, and I’ll always be a VFL.”

    Bone finishes his Tennessee career with the seventh-most assists in a UT career with 405. He averaged 9.7 points, 4.3 assists, and 2.4 rebounds a game in his 95 career games as a Vol.