Jontay Porter declares for NBA Draft
For the second year in a row, Missouri forward Jontay Porter has declared for the NBA Draft. The sophomore forward announced his intentions on Friday. Michael Porter Sr. told PowerMizzou.com that Jontay will hire an agent. Under new rules, that would not necessarily prevent him from returning to college, but he is expected to keep his name in the draft and eventually leave school for good. He would have to withdraw his name by May 29th if he wanted to come back to Mizzou.
Porter averaged 9.9 points and 6.8 rebounds as a freshman during the 2017-2018 season. Following the year, he opted to test the NBA Draft waters, and even though he was widely projected as a first-round pick, he ultimately decided to return to school for his sophomore season. That season never happened, however, as Porter tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee during a preseason scrimmage on Oct. 21. The injury forced Porter to miss the entire season.
After Christmas break, Porter relocated to Denver to rehab and train with his brother, current Denver Nuggets rookie and former Missouri player Michael Porter Jr. There, he re-tore the ACL in his right knee on March 23, casting serious doubt on his draft stock. Porter released a statement on Twitter admitting he was on the court before he was cleared to do so and saying he has already undergone surgery for the injury.
Despite the second ACL tear, however, there is still a chance Porter gets drafted on June 20. NBADraftnet projects Porter to be selected with the No. 45 overall pick by the Detroit Pistons in its latest mock draft. If Porter is not selected with one of the 60 draft picks, he would still be eligible to return to Missouri. However, sources have told PowerMizzou that Porter is not expected to return from school regardless of whether or not his name is called on draft night.
Porter's departure means Missouri has three vacant scholarships for the 2019-2020 season (assuming center Jeremiah Tilmon, who declared for the NBA Draft on Monday, returns to school). One of those scholarships could be handed to walk-on Parker Braun. In addition, The Tigers hosted Duquesne transfer Eric Williams Jr. for an official visit last weekend.
Attention also now shifts to Porter's father, Missouri assistant coach Michael Porter Sr. Porter Sr. has one year remaining on a three-year, $1.125-million contract. It's unknown whether he will remain in his current role with the staff now that he will no longer have a son on the team.