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BC-BKC--Arkansas-Gafford

March 19, 2019
Arkansas coach Mike Anderson says sophomore forward Daniel Gafford has declared for the NBA draft and will not play when the Razorbacks face Providence in a first-round NIT game. Anderson says he supports Gafford’s decision and believes he will be a first-round pick. The 6-foot-11 Gafford could have left last year but chose to return to Arkansas.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas forward Daniel Gafford has declared for the NBA draft and will not play in the NIT, where the Razorbacks faced Providence on Tuesday night.

Coach Mike Anderson said Monday he supports Gafford’s decision and believes he will be a first-round draft pick. Gafford, a 6-foot-11 first-team all-SEC pick, could have left last year but returned to Arkansas.

His decision to skip the NIT follows a trend set by football players who sit out bowl games that aren’t part of the playoffs so they don’t risk an injury that could affect their draft position.

Gafford was the only player in the SEC to rank among the top five in scoring (fourth, 16.9 points per game) and rebounding (second, 8.7 rpg). In two seasons at Arkansas, he averaged 14.3 points and 7.4 rebounds while piling up 141 blocks and shooting 63.5 percent from the field.

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