After a scary on-court collapse during a game in December that ended his season, Florida forward Keyontae Johnson announced Wednesday that he won’t enter his name in the 2021 NBA Draft. Instead, the 2021 SEC Preseason Player of the Year indicated he will prepare for the upcoming college basketball season while waiting for clearance to resume his playing career.
“Thank you for the prayers and concern that you have shown to me during these trying few months,” Johnson wrote in a message posted to social media. “It is extremely touching and very much appreciated to have the support of Gator Nation and the world standing by my side.
“I am progressing & steadily making progress daily in my health. I am patiently waiting on medical clearance. While speaking with my Family, Doctors, Coaches, and Athletic Trainer I’ve decided not to enter my name into the 2021 NBA Draft.
I plan to keep working to prepare for the upcoming season. My story continues to be written & driven by God! Go Gators!”
If Johnson is cleared for the 2021-22 season at Florida, his return to the floor would be an emotional and monumental moment. The former four-star prospect reportedly had to be placed in a medically induced coma after his collapse in a horrific nationally-televised moment.
Eventually, he rejoined the Gators by embracing the role of student coach as Florida finished the season 15-10 with a loss in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. He told a university publication in February he thought he would play again, and Wednesday’s message appears to be confirmation that he remains focused on that goal.