NBA Draft Process: Eligibility for the NBA Draft Explained

The NBA Draft is a yearly event that has been taking place since the year 1947. The annual event allows the National Basketball Association teams to select players who want to play professionally in the league.

The draft day is hugely anticipated by everyone in high school, college, and even international students, and as a result, it is very competitive. The question of who would be chosen is always anticipated by people, especially those who engage in NBA betting.

In the drafts, different teams take turns picking players. The NBA lets the worst team (the fourteen teams that missed the playoffs in the previous season) pick first, so there’s a chance they end up with better players, and they will be able to improve their performances in the league.

How Does the NBA Draft Work?

The Draft season is a platform for college basketball athletes to showcase their talents and get drafted into professional basketball. However, certain criteria govern this selection. The season is open to eligible players.

While any student-athlete can enter the event in hopes of being chosen by their desired NBA teams, they must be qualified. Qualifications run from age to college eligibility. This article will discuss the know-how of declaration of eligibility to enter the 2022 NBA Draft.

The Requirements for NBA Draft Eligibility

There are a few major requirements to qualify for the NBA draft. While many believe a basketball player’s only requirement is his height, this is not the case. These are some of the important qualities every prospect must have:

1. Age

A player becomes eligible for the NBA draft when they’re at least 19 years old on the draft year. Also, players are required to announce their eligibility some days before the draft.

2. High School and College Eligibility

For a player to be considered for the NBA Draft, one season must have passed since he has finished high school. However, it is different for athletes that completed their high school in the United States but attended college in another country. Such students have to wait for four years after their high school graduation to be eligible.

College graduates become automatically qualified if they complete four years of college basketball or go “One and Done.”

“One and Done”, also known as the early entry approach has three techniques. They are:

  • When a player forfeits their college after playing college basketball for one year and declares for the draft. Still, the age rule applies to such students, and they must declare their eligibility 60 days before the draft. However, before a student forfeits their college education, they are advised to assess their skills to determine if it’s good enough compared to other top players.
  • A player may also qualify after playing basketball for one season in the minor NBA League, called NBA G League.
  • A student who didn’t attend college might be eligible according to the rules above but can also qualify for an entrant status by sending a letter to the NBA Commissioner’s New York office and filing an application.

3. International Players’ Criteria

To be considered an international player, a player must cross the following checklists:

  • He must have lived outside the United States for a minimum of three years before the NBA draft.
  • He must not have attended a college in the US and never completed his high school in the country.

Things to Know Before Applying for the NBA Draft

Before taking the big leap of drafting for the NBA, there is some important information you need to know. They include:

  • There’s no 100% chance that the NBA will consider you if you enter the draft. On the draft day, only 60 players are chosen. Other players who aren’t chosen can most likely get a spot in an NBA G Team.
  • If you want to apply for the entry status, you should only hire an agent for yourself if you want to turn professional. Hiring an agent makes you lose your college basketball eligibility, which might be a problem if you aren’t drafted.
  • Be sure you want to apply for the draft. Withdrawing from the draft is allowed, and you can apply for another one, but you can only do this twice.
  • The NBA Draft is an avenue for you to prove that you’re ready to go professionally, so statistics alone won’t be enough to get you drafted.

Top Qualities NBA Teams Look for in Players

The following are qualities that could help you get drafted by the NBA:


Athleticism is one of the qualities that NBA teams look out for. As someone who is hoping to be drafted, you need to improve your lateral quickness, dribbling speed, make a good rebound, and tackle opponents’ shots


Although teams can’t get a glimpse of your whole character immediately, some of them can be seen on the court. They are your work ethic, leadership skills, and how coachable you are.


Players who can use both hands have better chances of being considered. Being ambidextrous is important because it can elevate your dribbling, scoring, and shot-blocking skills.


Being flexible has a lot of advantages, and it’s one of the things teams look out for. There have been many past basketball stars who were chosen because of their versatility. Make sure you’re versatile and can be flexible on the field.


Although NBA teams do not have a generally preferable body size, you still need a good wingspan to have a high reach. Nevertheless, as someone who is looking forward to competing with professionals, you need to hit the gym and get yourself in good shape.

Final Remarks

Applying for a draft isn’t as important as being prepared for it. As you start preparing to apply for the NBA Draft, you need to be optimistic about the outcome and understand that not getting picked means you can always train more and do it again.