Jakarr Sampson didn't get drafted, as most expected (despite some optimism). And senior Orlando Sanchez, touted as an NBA-level talent but with only one major college basketball season, also went undrafted last night.
But this isn't the end of the line for either forward from St. John's.
Sampson, per his agent, already has a slot in the NBA. The rangy 6'8" forward will play with the Philadelphia 76ers in the NBA Summer League next week.
"Naturally, Jakarr would have preferred to be drafted but he has the upside ability and determination to earn his way on to an NBA roster," said St. John's head coach Steve Lavin. "No doubt JaKarr has a bright future in basketball."
At 21 years of age but with two years of eligibility, some have taken Sampson to task for declaring for the draft. But unless he improved significantly with another year at St. John's, his draft stock would continue to dip. He can continue to improve as a basketball player, honing his athletic tools into versatile basketball skills while playing for money.
Jakarr Sampson said that "[my agent Seth Cohen, Verus Management] went over all the team situations with me and we decided that the best opportunity for me was with the Philadelphia 76ers. I will be ready and you can be sure I will make the most of it."
Philadelphia will participate in both NBA Summer League sessions. The Sixers will start in the Orlando Summer League from July 5-11 on Saturday July 5 against the Orlando Magic's summer league entry. The Las Vegas Summer League begins on Friday, July 11, but the Sixers' first game is not until the evening of July 12 [schedule].
Orlando Sanchez, a 6'9" versatile forward who averaged eight points and six assists in his lone season for St. John's, had also worked out for the Sixers; he will hope to catch on with an NBA team. There is no indication yet that he will be in an NBA Summer League squad, but he has some interest.
Sanchez, now 26 years of age, also participated in the adidas EuroCamp, and should find a place playing professionally abroad.