Calathes going to NBA draft, won't hire agent
Nick Calathes says he will declare for the NBA draft
The Florida star says he won't hire an agent and could return to school
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida guard Nick Calathes could end his college career without playing a single game in the NCAA tournament.
Calathes announced Monday that he will enter the NBA draft. But he will not hire an agent, which would allow him to return to Florida if he's unhappy with his draft stock.
The 6-foot-6 sophomore from Casselberry led the Gators in scoring this season, averaging 17.2 points. He also averaged 5.3 rebounds and 6.4 assists, and was the only player in the nation to average at least 15 points, five rebounds and six assists.
Calathes' passing ability might be his best asset. Other parts of his game, though, might not fare as well in the NBA. His lack of athleticism and his jumper -- he shoots 3-pointers and jump shots with his feet on the ground -- could hinder his draft status.
Florida coach Billy Donovan, who met with Calathes on Sunday night, hasn't said whether he thought his star player was ready for the next level.
"I don't think it's even about being ready," Donovan said last week. "It's not about that anymore. I think the one thing that people don't understand about the NBA is it's a league of investments. You're making an investment, and a lot of times you're making a long-term investment and hoping your investment gets better and better and better.
"It has nothing to do with whether they're ready or not ready. ... The decision really comes down to the NBA people in terms of do they think this is a good, quality investment for their company."
Calathes said Monday that Donovan supported his decision.
"(He) told me he'd do whatever he could to help me and my family make an educated decision," Calathes said in a statement. "I love the University of Florida and am leaving my option to return open. This is a great opportunity to take some time, look at my future beyond college, collect information and see where I'm at."
Calathes struggled down the stretch, averaging 11 points in Florida's final six regular-season games, and the Gators missed the NCAA tournament for the second consecutive season.
Calathes was better in the NIT and even said he didn't want to leave school without playing in the NCAA tournament. It could happen, though.
If Calathes does leave, the Gators would be without both starting guards going into next season. Fellow guard Walter Hodge was the team's lone senior.
Freshmen Erving Walker and Ray Shipman would be the team's only experienced guards. Star signee Kenny Boynton, one of the nation's top recruits last year, could help fill the void. Donovan likely would be forced to add another guard before next season.
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