“After much consideration, I have decided to take the next step in my basketball career and will declare for the 2021 NBA draft,” Mann told ESPN. “To Gator nation, your love and support will always hold a special place in my heart. I will be hiring an agent to help guide me through this process.”
Mann, the No. 15 prospect in the ESPN 100 NBA draft rankings, is coming off the best stretch of his college career, averaging 21 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists per game in the SEC and NCAA tournaments over the past two weeks, elevating his standing significantly in the eyes of NBA talent evaluators.
“My season at Florida was filled with a lot of individual growth with the significant increase of playing time and emphasis on fulfilling my role,” Mann said. “However, this year was filled with adversity in [the form of] COVID and the loss of Keyontae [Johnson]. While we didn’t reach our goal as a team in the NCAA tournament, it was a great experience nonetheless.”
Growing to 6-foot-5 over the course of his college career, Mann is considered one of the most talented ball handlers and shot creators in this draft class, featuring NBA range on his jump shot and impressive shiftiness changing speeds out of the pick-and-roll.
“I think that NBA teams were able to see my ability to play on and off the ball as well as my improved stats across the board,” Mann said. “I was able to showcase my leadership skills, efficiency shooting the ball, defensive versatility and ability to rebound.”
Mann, a McDonald’s All American coming out of high school, averaged 16.0 points, 5.6 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game for Florida, also shooting 40% from beyond the arc, and earned All-Southeastern Conference honors.
“During the pre-draft process, I am eager to show NBA teams my athleticism and true length/size,” Mann said. “I am looking forward to showcasing my extended shooting range and my ability to run an offense while getting others involved.”
The NBA has yet to announce when the 2021 draft will be held, and significant uncertainty exists about what the pre-draft process will look like in terms of private workouts or a combine. Neither the NBA nor the NCAA has announced a deadline to enter or withdraw from the draft, but Mann’s college career is likely over, and he thanked his teammates in a statement he sent to ESPN.
“I would like to thank Coach White and his staff at the University of Florida for believing in me and helping to shape me into the man and player I am today,” he said. “Thank you to all my teammates who shared the Gator uniform with me for the last two seasons. Thank you to my family for always providing me with love and support. No words can ever describe how grateful I am to you.”