While the NCAA season and March Madness have just ended, the NBA and affiliate league playoffs are just beginning. With that, and the Bearcats roster starting to change, it’s time to watch the Bearcats jump to the pros.
While there are seven former Bearcats currently in the pros, only two remain in the NBA. Others reside in the NBA’s G-League for development, and a few others are overseas.
One such NBA player is 10-year NBA veteran Lance Stephenson. Stephenson, by far, has the best resume of the current seven players. Stephenson has played in 57 career playoff games, including 53 with the Indiana Pacers. He is now in his third stint with the Pacers and is averaging 9.3 points per game while shooting 45% from the field.
Also in the NBA is forward, Gary Clark. Clark is a rotational piece for the New Orleans Pelicans, who are currently ranked in the top nine seeds and would enter the qualifying tournament for a shot at making the NBA playoffs. Clark, on his fifth team in just four years, has playoff experience, starting all five Magic playoff games in their only 2020 series against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Three players are currently members of the G-League, one of which is set to make the playoffs. However, due to COVID-19 restrictions earlier this year, some of them were given the opportunity to make their NBA debuts after signing 10-day contracts with organizations.
Forward Jarron Cumberland, who was last with the Delaware Blue Coats, the G-League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, signed a 10-day contract with the Portland Trail Blazers in December 2021. He appeared in three games and recorded his first NBA field goal in Game 1. With Delaware, Cumberland averaged 10.4 points in nine games. Cumberland is currently a free agent.
Forward Tre Scott, who is currently with the Cleveland Charge, has played two games with the Cleveland Cavaliers this year. Scott recorded his first NBA point, scoring six points in his last game before being sent on the charge. Scott averaged 10.8 points in 29 games with the Charge this year, but the team struggled and finished last in the East, missing the playoffs.
This year, guard Jacob Evans is the only player to make the G-League playoffs. Evans spent a few years with the Golden State Warriors before joining their G-League affiliate in Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz snuck into the playoffs, taking the sixth and final seed in the conference. Evans also appeared in 29 games, scoring 6.1 points and 4.9 rebounds for Santa Cruz.
Of the two players on the road, guard Troy Caupain has had the more success. Caupain, who currently plays for basketball club Darussafaka in Turkey, was named one of the top five players in the FIBA Champions League for March. Caupain averaged 17 points per game with 5.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists in March to earn him the title.
Guard Sean Kilpatrick is also overseas. Kilpatrick, a member of Basket Zaragoza from Spain, recently joined the team and has played his first two games with the team. Kilpatrick had a minor NBA career, playing for six teams in four seasons. His best season was in 2016-17, when he played 70 games for the Brooklyn Nets and averaged 13 points and four rebounds.
While it doesn’t look like any Bearcats are heading to the NBA this year, it’s only a matter of time before NBA commissioner Adam Silver calls a Bearcat’s name the draft day.