Report: Gophers guard Amir Coffey officially declares for the NBA Draft

DanielHouse

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Gophers guard Amir Coffey has announced he intends to fulfill his declaration and enter the NBA Draft, per Evan Daniels. Coffey had until May 29 to determine whether he would return to Minnesota or officially declare. After testing the waters this spring, Coffey decided to forgo his senior season and pursue an opportunity to play at the professional level.

Last season, Coffey led the Gophers, averaging 16.6 points and 3.2 assists per game. In Minnesota’s ten Big Ten wins, Coffey averaged 23.7 points per game. On the flip side, he posted 12.4 points per game in the Gophers’ 11 Big Ten losses. When Minnesota’s top-scorer was dialed in, it elevated the play of everyone around him. During the final half of the season, Coffey was playing at a very high level, which drew attention from NBA scouts.

Coffey will now chase a childhood dream – to play in the NBA. His position versatility, ability to handle the ball and size are attractive attributes professional teams like. He is working with Excel Sports Management, one of the top sports agencies representing NBA clients. Coffey participated in the G-League Invite and met with the Nuggets, Hawks, Celtics, Pelicans, Thunder and others, according to Darren Wolfson. He also worked in front of many teams at a recent Pro Day.

His most recent workouts have gone well and he’s spent extra time working on his jump-shot, according to Marcus Fuller. This is clearly an area where he must develop additional consistency at the next level. Although many top draft analysts are projecting him to go undrafted, Coffey could still pursue an NBA career by following the G-League path. However, a team may be willing to put him on their roster because they like his overall upside.

With Coffey deciding to declare, the Gophers now have two open recruiting slots for the upcoming season. No matter what, it will be difficult to replace a player with the skills Coffey can provide in the back court. Minnesota will be relying upon Pittsburgh transfer point guard Marcus Carr to make an instant impact. They will also likely need to add one more versatile guard who can handle the ball and play on the wing. Those in the building are very pleased with the progress of Vanderbilt transfer guard Payton Willis and he may become one of the most surprising contributors next season.
 

Bad Gopher

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Amir would have had a monster senior year here and propelled this squad. Happy for him chasing his career, but this is a painful blow as a Gopher fan.
 

chemgopher

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Short-sighted decision. Its unfortunate for the both the team and Amir. I wish him all the best, but Amir's reluctance to use his right hand and his lack of consistent perimeter shooting may lead to him never escaping mid-tier European leagues.
 

scools12

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Maybe there is something to the Coffey hates Pitino talk after all?

Either way he’s probably looking at the G League or playing overseas.

Good luck to him.
 
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rowdaboat

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Bad decision, he'd be lucky to ever even make an NBA rotation
 

Roland Brooks

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G-League is no joke and if you don’t have some success there will be 200+ new players ready to take your spot next year. I wish him the best.
 

Gophers7633

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Damn. Huge loss. Wonder who the starter will be in his place? Can't see Hurt starting.
 

short ornery norwegian

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If Coffey says he's coming back, people would be praising him.

He says he's not coming back, and immediately people are on here predicting failure.

It's his life. It's his choice. I think I can say with close to 100% certainty that Coffey's decision-making process did NOT include how Gopher Hole would react.

I hope he goes on to have a solid career. But, if it doesn't happen, I will not be on here ripping him.
 

salzie

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Bunch sour grapes here.
I was hoping he returned, but wish young man the best
 

LongLiveMilesTarver

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We are "lucky" in a way that we don't have too many guys leave early. Most programs, even mediocre ones, lose guys pretty regularly.
 

EG#9

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It's hard not to be a bit annoyed by this as a Gopher fan. Obviously, it is Amir's choice and I wish him the best but I have yet to see anyone at all (much less anyone notable) even suggest he would be drafted. I hope to see him on the floor in the NBA if not next year then in the near future.
 

Roland Brooks

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Of course people will question the move especially when there is a chance he won’t get drafted. It’s not like he is lotto he may not get drafted and could end up in the Canadian Basketball League. A decision like this is why sports make great water cooler chatter.
 

jamiche

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I remember Voshon Leonard came back for his senior year after receiving negative feedback. (The rules were much less player friendly back then.) His heart clearly wasn't in it and he slid into the second round. He went on to have a solid NBA career, but he should not have come back for his last year.

Coffey is a very good player who is chasing his dream. He will get paid next year, and it might be by an NBA team. Coming back to the gophers would be anti-climactic and not in his best interest. I wish him the best.
 

rowdaboat

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If Coffey says he's coming back, people would be praising him.

He says he's not coming back, and immediately people are on here predicting failure.

It's his life. It's his choice. I think I can say with close to 100% certainty that Coffey's decision-making process did NOT include how Gopher Hole would react.

I hope he goes on to have a solid career. But, if it doesn't happen, I will not be on here ripping him.
You can be a good college basketball player and still have no pro career
 

touchdownvikings

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Amir,

I wish you well and don't think I need to do much in the way of wishing. You turned a corner mentally this year and that was a major step for you - you now know how to take over a game. Your mentality plus physical and athletic abilities will take you far! You probably have heard about a couple of things you should work on. Listen to the feedback that is consistent and then work with the same ethic you've always brought to the Gophs. The Gopher fanbase has your back and wants nothing but the best for you. Speaking for no one other than myself, I humbly ask that you show up from time to time at big games to support the team and help bring the younger guys along... pretty sure you'll do that with or without some a**hole on the internet asking you! I'll be buying NBA tix to watch you!
 

jamiche

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Maybe there is something to the Coffey hates Pitino talk after all?

Either way he’s probably looking at the G League or playing overseas.

Good luck to him.
That would surprise me. Pitino did everything he could to get him ready for the next level.
 

bemidjigopher

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Bunch sour grapes here.
I was hoping he returned, but wish young man the best
I think it's a pretty tame group, no one is wishing him I'll will. Besides Coffey getting to the NBA is in our best long term interest from a recruiting stand point, need to ship these high end recruits you can get to the league by coming here

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Gopher in Texas

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If Coffey says he's coming back, people would be praising him.

He says he's not coming back, and immediately people are on here predicting failure.

It's his life. It's his choice. I think I can say with close to 100% certainty that Coffey's decision-making process did NOT include how Gopher Hole would react.

I hope he goes on to have a solid career. But, if it doesn't happen, I will not be on here ripping him.
+1

His life, his decision.

Best of luck to him. Hope he realizes his dreams. I appreciate all of his efforts for the Gophers, always looked to be giving 100%.

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Some guy

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If Coffey says he's coming back, people would be praising him.

He says he's not coming back, and immediately people are on here predicting failure.

It's his life. It's his choice. I think I can say with close to 100% certainty that Coffey's decision-making process did NOT include how Gopher Hole would react.

I hope he goes on to have a solid career. But, if it doesn't happen, I will not be on here ripping him.
For sure to parts 3 and 4

Whether he came back or not...he isn’t going to have an NBA career.
 

macgopher

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For sure to parts 3 and 4

Whether he came back or not...he isn’t going to have an NBA career.
You may be correct but I will always be left wondering that if he came back and had a full season of games like his last seven or eight this year then what would his draft position be next Year?
 

Goldteam

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Had some great games, had some invisible games.

Led us to 9-11 in the Big 10

Meh!
 

SJUgopher

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I remember Voshon Leonard came back for his senior year after receiving negative feedback. (The rules were much less player friendly back then.) His heart clearly wasn't in it and he slid into the second round. He went on to have a solid NBA career, but he should not have come back for his last year.

Coffey is a very good player who is chasing his dream. He will get paid next year, and it might be by an NBA team. Coming back to the gophers would be anti-climactic and not in his best interest. I wish him the best.
Voshon was actually drafted and still came back.
 

macgopher

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Had some great games, had some invisible games.

Led us to 9-11 in the Big 10

Meh!
But he was a different player game after game at the end of the season. I don’t feel that he had anything but monster games the last five or seven last year.
 

Parcival

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This move from Coffey is questionable, and I wonder if the Pitino-Coffey sour relationship rumors have some validity. Not only could he have elevated our program right before the biggest recruiting summer in recent memory, but he hasn't been projected to be drafted in any mock NBA drafts. I sincerely hope he has information that we don't when it comes to Draft Night.

On the other hand, Ihnen will get all the minutes he can handle. Also, if we get Mika Adams-Woods because of Coffey's 35 mpg being up for grabs then our 2019 recruiting class will be polished off nicely.

I wish him all the best of course-hope he gets drafted.
 
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