Players Should Be Able to Go to the NBA Out of High School

MACAU, CHINA - AUGUST 01: LeBron James #6 and Kobe Bryant #10 of the USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team look on during the USA Basketball International Challenge exhibition game against the Lithuania National Team at the Coati Strip Cotai Arena August 1, 2008 in Macau, China. (Photo by MN Chan/Getty Images)

The NBA is where some players go to make their dreams come true. Some players are not from good backgrounds and that can lead to basketball being the only option to make it out of their environment. That’s why players should be able to go to the NBA out of high school.

Basketball is not a sport that demands a lot out of a player physically like football does, so once an athlete turns 18, they should be able to go pro. Overseas some players go pro while they are in their early teens. Luka Doncic played professionally in Europe ever since he was 13. This past season the NBA proposed to change the age to declare for the draft back to 18, which should go into effect by 2022.

The NBA Should Allow High School Athletes to Declare for the Draft

Some Players Financially Need It

In the NCAA it is against the rules for players to profit from their name since they are considered amateurs. That is why the EA Sport’s NCAA video games were canceled. That can be a conflict of interest for a player that is struggling to make ends meet. In 2010, five Ohio State football players were suspended for five games for selling championship rings, jerseys, and awards to get tattoos.

Unless star college players get compensated for their athletic contributions they will always go pro as early as possible. In the NBA where the individual player is a big deal the need to make money will always be trump a college education. LeBron James had a Hummer in high school and was ruled ineligible to play in the NCAA until they found out how he paid for it. It was discovered that he took out a loan and he was going to pay it back once drafted.

A star player wants to take care of their family with the talent that they have. When they are 18 they are considered an adult. If they have the right to fight for their country why can’t they play in the NBA?

Success Stories versus Unsuccessful Stories

For every LeBron James, there are several more players that not successful. James has been the best success story out of high school in NBA history. He has had a long career and may go down as the best player to ever play the game. Lou Williams was drafted out of high school in the second round and he has had a long and successful career also. That’s not everybody though. There are busts galore when discussing players that came right out of high school. Sebastian Telfair, Kwame Brown, Jonathan Bender, and Robert Swift are just a few examples.

That shouldn’t deter the NBA from letting high school players come to the NBA though. When a player is 18, they are grown enough to make the decision to come into the league. Brown played 12 seasons in the NBA, Bender played eight seasons (he missed three seasons with a knee injury), Telfair played 12 seasons and Swift played four seasons (he sat out a season with a knee injury). With the exception of Swift, all those players had long careers.


If a player is 18 they should be allowed to declare for the NBA Draft right out of high school. The player is old enough to make a decision that could affect the lives of his family and his children. Going to the NBA is a big deal and a life-changing move that will take young men out of potentially bad situations, which doesn’t sound like that is something the league should keep from a young adult with enough talent to do so.

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