Even though he was not selected in the 2017 National Basketball Association draft, former University of Wisconsin Men’s basketball player Nigel Hayes will get a chance his summer to play with the New York Knicks.
The Knicks announced Friday afternoon that they signed Hayes, Vanderbilt University’s Luke Kornet and the University of Florida’s Canyon Barry to their summer practice team. While this is not a guarantee that any of the players will get an NBA contract at the end of August, they will be given partial guarantees for training camp selections come September.
After going undrafted, Hayes to sign with New York KnicksAfter going undrafted, former University of Wisconsin men’s basketball forward Nigel Hayes has officially signed on with the New York Knicks. Read…
Knicks are signing Wisconsin's Nigel Hayes to a training camp deal. https://t.co/rnp2fL5L6D
— LegionHoops.com (@LegionWebsite) June 23, 2017
Back in March, when the Badgers headed to New York for the East Regional Round of the NCAA March Madness tournament, Hayes admitted during a press conference that he was rather unimpressed with the Big Apple, calling it “too big,” “too dirty” and having “trash everywhere.”
While the Ohio native might have to get used to the crowded streets of Manhattan, he admitted that this situation might just be something he has to get used to if he wants to continue playing basketball.
“You’d have no choice [where you get drafted],’’ Hayes said. “It’s just something you’d have to live with it.”
Hayes’s agent Kevin Bradburry admitted to the New York Post that this was just another one of Hayes’ attempts to make a crowd laugh. Bradburry said that Hayes is looking forward to playing in the Garden and getting a change to continue his career.
I played Nigel Hayes in HORSE today…it went about as well as you'd expect for me…. pic.twitter.com/151mR8a0NF
— Jordan Strack (@JordanStrack) June 21, 2017
Hayes comes to the Knicks having played 37 games his senior season at UW, with an average of 32.4 minutes played per game. Hayes had a .457 FG percentage on the season, and a .314 from the 3-point line.
Hayes will also be joined in the NBA by his fellow Wisconsin teammate Bronson Koenig, who has been selected by the Milwaukee Bucks. Their former teammate Zak Showalter has also been working out with the Bucks over the summer.
— Stephanie Sutton (@Steph__Sutton) June 19, 2017
Along with Kornet, Hayes will be joined this summer by Frank Ntilikina, Daymean Dotson and Ognjen Jaramaz. The starting date for this year’s summer practice team has not been set yet by the Knicks.