Bruin James will spend 2023 in college, the G League or Australia, per the report

Brony James is expected to be eligible for the 2024 NBA draft, which comes a year after his high school graduation. What he plans to do in the year between finishing high school and the draft, however, remains somewhat of a mystery. Joe Warden of the Athletic listed three possibilities: the traditional route through college basketball, a stint with the G-League Ignite, or, as a more surprising option, a gap year spent playing in the NBL in Australia.

This path is hardly new. Several American prospects have taken that route through the league’s Next Stars program, with LaMelo Ball serving as its most famous alum. The primary question any team or league will face in recruiting James will be who is best suited to prepare him for the NBA.

There is no clear answer to this question yet. James has dropped in his class rankings over the past few years. 247 sports He is now ranked 50th in the class of 2023, and has no official offers. While it’s hardly unheard of for a player in this position to officially reach the NBA, the prospect’s ability to excel as a multi-year college player is remarkable. All indications right now point to James heading to the NBA as soon as possible.

His father, LeBron James, has indicated in the past that he wants his son to attend Duke … but with a catch. In 2018, he said of former Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski that “Hopefully when my guy comes out, he’s still on top.” The elder James played for Coach K twice in the Olympics, but the former Duke coach retired after the 2021 NCAA Tournament. This will apparently open up the eyebrow recruitment a bit.

The James family’s plan has always been for the two LeBrons to spend at least one season on the same team in the NBA. Apparently the hope would be for him to do so with the Lakers in Los Angeles, but it should be noted that James became eligible for a contract extension on Thursday but did not sign it. He can become a free agent next offseason if he chooses, and of course, some team hoping to sign James could draft Bruin before the Lakers have a chance.

This is a problem for the James family to deal with in 2024. For now, the question is how he should juggle the seasons between high school and the NBA. There’s no clear answer yet, but if Australia is suddenly in the mix, they could consider a number of options.