Yeshiva University's Orthodox star player Ryan Turell will enter the 2022 NBA draft which is scheduled for June 23.
Turell gave up his eligibility for another college basketball season to enter the draft and possibly become the first Jewish Orthodox player in the NBA.
"My main goal is to play professional basketball next year," he said. Turell is the lead scorer in college basketball across all divisions, averaging 27.1 points per game, with a 47% accuracy rate.
His team won 50 consecutive games from November 2019 to December 2021, and he will leave as the lead scorer in the history of Yeshiva University, with more than 2,000 points.
Turell wears a skullcap when he plays and said he plans to continue doing so as a professional player.
"Being the first Orthodox Jew in the NBA will be a dream come true for me, Baruch Hashem. But, not less important, it would also motivate people around the world who didn't think this is an option."
Turell is being followed by some NBA teams this season, with several owners, managers, and former players coming to games at Washington Heights to watch him.
“I know NBA teams came to see me. My coach used to tell me after every game, especially toward the end of the season. A lot of NBA teams have come to watch," he said.
Turell's chances to be picked in the NBA Draft are low but he may create a buzz during the pre-draft process or showcases, like Portsmouth Invitational Tournament.
Scouts will test his ability to continue and score many points even against larger and more powerful players as the level of the competition rises, and will see how he will cope in defensive positions.
First published: 20:34, 03.15.22