Former UConn star James Bouknight was recently announced as one of 69 invitees to the 2021 NBA Draft Combine, which will take place from June 21-27 in Chicago. As part of the combine, Bouknight will participate in interviews with NBA teams and run through a series of shooting, strength and agility drills alongside some 5-on-5 competition from June 22-25.
Bouknight is one of five Big East players to receive a combine invite, joining Julian Champagnie (St. John’s), Sandro Mamukelashvili (Seton Hall), Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (Villanova) and Marcus Zegarowski (Creighton). After a solid freshman season where he averaged 13 points per game, Bouknight took his game another level during his sophomore season.
The Brooklyn, New York native quickly established himself as one of the best scorers in the country, best exemplified by his 40-point performance against Creighton in the Huskies’ Big East opener. While Bouknight did miss time due to an elbow injury suffered he suffered against Marquette on Jan. 5, the sophomore returned to finish his final year in Storrs averaging 18.7 points and 5.7 rebounds per game and earning First Team All-Big East Honors.
Bouknight’s strong sophomore season vaulted him up mock draft boards throughout the year, going from a late first/early second round pick to a consensus lottery pick come March. Currently, most mock drafts have Bouknight going just outside the lottery, but he’s a consensus first rounder — The Ringer has him at No. 21, NBC Sports at No. 18, while Bleacher Report has him the highest at No. 13.
While Bouknight is already known for his athleticism and scoring ability, he’ll have a chance to prove his stuff against the best competition in the draft class at the combine. With some strong numbers in agility drills and a quality performance in the scrimmages, Bouknight could easily creep into the conversation as a lottery pick.