Every basketball enthusiast has heard about Grayson Boucher, alias “The Professor.” He’s an exceptional basketball talent with otherworldly ball-handling and dribbling skills. But why is The Professor not in the NBA?
Given his unique talent, you might think major league scouts are lining up contracts. However, the Professor’s case is special.
On the one hand, he has what it takes to star in the NBA. However, we will discuss some factors that render Grayson Boucher ineligible for the big leagues.
What Does It Take to Play in the NBA?
So, why is the Professor not in the NBA? Firstly, you have to know what it takes to qualify for the NBA. Many budding athletes dream of shining in the national league, but there is room for only the most talented.
NBA officials have a long list of requirements to determine who has what it takes. We distilled their criteria into three key factors:
Make the High School Team
Playing in the high school league allows you to hone your abilities while still young. Also, the big teams send scouts to various matches to look for upcoming talents. Therefore, there is a good chance of getting noticed if you are the star of your sophomore team.
Age – At Least 19
The NBA only recruits players who are at least 19 years of age during the draft year. So if you’re any younger, you would need to spend some time in college.
Play College Basketball
Just like in high school, college basketball lets you improve your basketball skills. However, it is at a higher level, and the competition is stiffer. You’ll meet up with new players and encounter various challenges not found in NFHS basketball.
Competition is the weeding tool for NBA scouts. If you dominate the NCAA, you’ll have a better chance of making the draft.
Why Is The Professor Not in the NBA
Grayson Boucher is an outstanding athlete. If you are an avid basketball player, you’ll appreciate his slick moves on the court. However, he doesn’t feature in the NBA’s roster for a couple of reasons:
The Type of Ball He Plays
Firstly, the Professor is a master at street basketball. While it is a standout discipline, his sport doesn’t mirror the NBA games.
For starters, the rules of streetball are lenient enough to allow some jaw-dropping moves. The kind of ball Grayson plays allows for double dribbling and a lot of traveling. However, Prof. would be fouled for plenty of these moves if he were in the NBA. Consequently, he is more suited to a street court.
The NBA is a cutthroat environment. If you don’t have what it takes, you won’t get picked to join the big league. One crucial selection benchmark is height. So, the Professor is greatly disadvantaged in this area.
The average height of NBA players is well over six feet, but the Professor only rises to around 5-foot 9-inches. Even with his talent, he would need to spend a lot of time improving his style.
Drafting scouts also favor taller players because shorter athletes seem like a liability. They will have a hard time one-on-one against a 6-foot, 6-inch LeBron James. That’s not to say they cannot play ball — they would only struggle against towering opponents.
Did Not Play in the NCAA
If you’ve been wondering if the Professor played college basketball, here’s your answer. The Professor showcased his talent on the AND1 Mixtape tour back in 2003. He wowed spectators with his breathtaking moves and dropped any attempts at guarding him.
The Professor, who was 18 at the time, signed up as a full-time member of the AND1 squad. This decision, however, denied him a shot at the NCAA. The NBA requires some college basketball experience which Grayson missed at the time.
The NBA Isn't Everything
Lastly, Grayson Boucher seems more at home in a street court than in the NBA. His joy away from the NBA is probably the primary reason he chose to sideline an NBA career.
Still, he continues to wow the world with his basketball skills. You can check out his exceptional skills on full display on his YouTube channel.
Why The Professor Could Play in the NBA
It won’t do justice to discount the Professor from playing in the NBA. The major league is not a vicious environment that picks and discards talent as it pleases.
First off, Grayson is not a towering six-footer. However, he could still give notable point guards like Steph Curry a run for their money. There are plenty of short NBA players who excelled in the league. Some of them even won the NBA’s dunking competition against much taller opposition.
The Professor is well adapted to life on the court. His ball-handling and throw skills could come in handy when dictating plays. In addition, he has a phenomenal passing ability that could make him an outstanding guard.
Also, he could, in theory at least, break a few legs dribbling past taller opponents.
Basketball attracts a lot of young people who dream of joining the NBA. Sadly, only a few players get picked in the draft.
However, the lack of selection doesn’t mean the other athletes aren’t worthy of a shot. Besides, there are exceptional talents, like Grayson Boucher, who get left out.
We can speculate that Grayson isn’t physically able to play an NBA match. Nevertheless, it all boils down to a personal decision he made to play with AND1’s team.
Unfortunately, this choice disallowed him from joining the NCAA and further eliminated his NBA chances.