Nets sign three undrafted guards from Wake Forest, UNLV and Harvard

Without picks in the first or second round Thursday, the Nets took an alternate route early Friday, signing three undrafted players —- one of whom will be on a two-way deal.

According to Jake Weingarten of Stockrisers, the Nets agreed to a two-way deal with 6’5” Wake Forest combo guard Alondes Williams and apparently a Summer League deal with 6’6” UNLV wingman Donovan Williams.

Later Adam Zagoria of Zags Blog reported that Harvard’s Noah Kirkwood, a 6’7” shooting guard, will also play for the Nets in Summer League.

The signings were confirmed by Shams Charania. The two Williams started at a bigger school — Alondes Williams at Oklahoma, Donovan Williams at Texas before transferring … and thriving in a new environment. Kirkwood was a three-year starter for the Crimson.

Of the two Williams, Alondes is seen as the better prospect. A 23-year-old super senior, Alondes was the ACC Player of the Year and an Honorable Mention All-American.

Wes Morton of our Atlanta Hawks sister site, Peachtree Hoops, wrote this of Alondes last month following a work out with Atlanta.

Alondes Williams is a big-bodied 6’5 205-lbs. guard who spring boarded onto the NBA radar after a huge breakout season with Wake Forest this past season. He began his college career at Oklahoma, but transferred to Wake Forest before his junior year for a chance at a bigger opportunity on the floor.

He averaged 18 points, 6.4 rebounds and 5.2 assists in 2021-22 after averaging just over 6 points in about 18 minutes per game in two seasons for the Sooners. Clearly, the change of scenery has helped develop and boost his play — and therefore his stock in the eyes of the 30 NBA franchises looking to acquire talent through the draft.

The Milwaukee native, while a combo guard, primarily plays the point. His short vision and ability to finish are his calling cards.

He is not a knockdown shooter, hitting only 28 percent of his 3-point shots. Nor is he an impactful defender. Peachtree Hoops noted as well that Alondes has been troubled by high turnover rate.

On offense, he can look to drive between too many bodies and has racked up turnovers as a result. 3.9 turnovers per 36 minutes is just too many for someone who looks to calmly facilitate a steady offense.

Donovan Williams, 21, is a deep shooter and is hyper athletic if slender. The Houston native projects as a 3-and-D player at the NBA level. Donovan was UNLV’s second-leading scorer last year at 12.7 points per game, hitting 43.6 percent of his 3-point attempts. As the Las Vegas Sun reported at the end of the season, he finally fulfilled his high school promise at UNLV.

A former 4-star recruit in the Class of 2019, Williams has long held a ton of potential due to his outstanding length and athleticism. He arrived at UNLV with major questions about his shooting ability, but he put those concerns to rest by nailing 43.6% of his 3-pointers this season, the best mark on the team.

He earned Mountain West Sixth Man of the Year honors in the process. He had two years of college eligibility remaining when he decided to enter the NBA Draft.

Here’s some of his highlights…

While Alondes is a big guard, Donovan will need to add strength if he is to make it in the NBA, according to more than one scouting report.

Donovan Williams tweeted out his thanks to the Nets organization early Friday.

Kirkwood, 22, was first team All-Ivy League. He averaged 17.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists last season while shooting 35.3 percent from deep. A native of Ottawa, Canada, Kirkwood has played for the Canadian national teams. He is seen as a physically and emotionally mature player, per an ESPN/Draft Express profile.

Polished. Plays with a level of maturity well beyond his years. Tremendous feel for the game. Very under control. Unselfish. Professional approach. Not a dynamic shooter.

Here’s video of his best game last season, a 31-point, 8-rebound game vs. Cornell.

The three are all expected to play for the Nets summer league entry beginning July 8 in Las Vegas (at Donovan Williams home arena.) In addition, the Nets five draft picks from the 2021 class and last year’s undrafted rookie, David Duke Jr. will travel to Las Vegas.

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