Jones, Knight, Liggins declare for NBA Draft without hiring agent



Terrence Jones, Brandon Knight and DeAndre Liggins each declared for the NBA Draft.

None of the three have hired or have announced plans to hire an agent, according to a UK release.

May 8 is the deadline for underclassmen to withdraw from the draft, provided an agent is not hired.

“I support the decision these three have made to take advantage of the process of putting their names in the draft,” UK head coach John Calipari said in the release. “They were a joy to coach this year and I would love the opportunity to continue to coach them again next season. I will always support my players in weighing their options and doing what is personally best for them and their families.”

Knight, a projected lottery pick and ranked No. 5 by Draft Express, averaged 17.3 points and 4.2 assists per game. He set the UK freshman scoring record, scoring 657 points, and was named a Freshman All-American and the NCAA East Regional Most Outstanding Player.

Calipari told Mike DeCourcy of Sporting News that the return of Jared Sullinger, Harrison Barnes and Perry Jones — who all were projected to go in the the top 10, if not the top 5 — pushed Knight firmly into the top-10 range. Calipari said he was finished gathering information on Knight, and a top-10 selection looked certain.

“How can I say no to that?” Calipari said.

“Playing in the NBA has always been a dream of mine and this is the next step,” Knight said. “All season long coach has been tutoring me on the fine points of being a point guard, and now I have an opportunity to put my game on display in front of NBA scouts as a result of my hard work.”

Jones averaged 15.7 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.9 blocks, and was named Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year by conference coaches. He is a projected lottery pick.

“Coach Cal and the rest of the staff pushed us all year long and helped us develop every part of our game to help prepare us for this point in our lives,” Jones said. “This will be a great chance for me to measure my skills against some of the best in the country and receive additional information on where I fit into this year’s draft.”

Liggins averaged 8.6 points and 4.0 rebounds and was named to the SEC All-Defensive Team. He is looking to play his way into the first round at the NBA Combine.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to enter my name into the draft, putting me one step closer to realizing my dream,” Liggins said. “Growing up in a tough environment in Chicago, it’s a pleasure to have an opportunity to do something special. This is another challenge I’m looking forward to, to have my game evaluated by pro scouts and see how I rank against some of the top players in the world.”