After an impressive NBA Draft Combine, Isaiah Whitehead is set to announce Thursday whether he will remain in draft or return to Seton Hall for his junior season. (Photo courtesy of Fox Sports)
The deadline for underclassmen to decide whether to remain in the NBA Draft is one week from Wednesday.
Seton Hall fans, however, will find out the result of their important decision six days prior.
Following a performance in last week's NBA Draft Combine that impressed many pro scouts, Isaiah Whitehead will ultimately announce on Thursday if he will remain in South Orange for his junior season, or take his burgeoning talents to the professional level.
"Will make a decision on May 19th whether or not to stay in the draft," the Coney Island guard and Big East Tournament Most Outstanding Player tweeted Sunday afternoon. "Overall, had an unbelievable experience at the NBA Draft Combine. Thanks for having me and making a dream come true."
Whitehead, whose tour de force at Madison Square Garden this past March led Seton Hall to its first Big East championship since 1993 and first NCAA Tournament since 2006, is projected as the 58th overall pick in next month's NBA Draft by DraftExpress, which puts him at the tail end of the second round.
However, after having already met with at least ten teams over the past week, with additional workouts yet to come, he insists that he will forgo his final two years of eligibility if promised that he will be a first-round selection.
"Oh yeah, 100 percent," Whitehead told SNY's Adam Zagoria at the combine when asked if he would sign with an agent under the proviso that a team guaranteed to take him in the opening round. "You can't give up opportunities like that."
Whitehead's next workout comes on Monday with the Philadelphia 76ers, who presently have three first-round selections, and could win the NBA Draft Lottery for the No. 1 overall pick. According to Zach Braziller of the New York Post, Whitehead will also showcase his skills for the Indiana Pacers, Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls in the coming days.
Should he return to school, Seton Hall will almost certainly be ranked in the Top 25 to start the season, as the Pirates would return everyone except graduating senior Derrick Gordon to a team that won 25 games last season under head coach Kevin Willard. Without him, though, Seton Hall will still be projected among the top tier of the Big East next season, with fellow juniors-to-be Angel Delgado, Desi Rodriguez, Khadeen Carrington and Ismael Sanogo leading the way as the Pirates look to defend their Big East crown.