Per Source, Jabari Parker Going Pro and Why it Helps Lakers

(Photo: Lance King/Getty Images)

While it’s been speculated that Jabari Parker would forgo his remaining years at Duke and make himself available for the NBA Draft, it is now official as reported first by Sports Illustrated

In an exclusive interview with Sports Illustrated, Parker reveals his thought process and what ultimetely lead to his decision to leave Duke for the NBA.

“Ultimately, I boiled my decision down to two simple questions:

Which environment — college or the NBA — offers me the best opportunity to grow as a basketball player?

Which environment — college or the NBA — offers me the best opportunity to grow and develop off the court?

The answer to both questions is undeniably the NBA.”

Parker is projected to go anywhere from 1st overall to no lower than 4th based on Mock Drafts from the reputable NBA Draft sites.

The Los Angeles Lakers finished with the 6th worst record in the NBA and if they don’t win one of the top 3 spots in the Draft Lottery, nor have a team with a better record win one of those top 3 picks which will drop the Lakers in the draft order, they will pick 6th.

While Parker will definitely not be there for the Lakers with the 6th pick, him entering the draft increases the talent pool and will still allow some of the other coveted players in the draft to fall to the Lakers, such as Marcus Smart from Oklahoma State, Julius Randle from Kentucky and maybe even the Australian phenom, Dante Exum.

The draft order will be determined on May 20th when ping pong balls selected from the NBA Draft Lottery will determine the direction of NBA franchises. The 2014 NBA Draft will take place on June 26th.

– Fern Rea

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Writer & NBA fan who’s been hooked since the days of Magic v Bird. Love basketball debates without it ending in a knife fight. My BBall nickname: “Todo El Dia” (All Day.) Hit me up on Twitter @fullcourtfern or Instagram: @raining3sdotcom