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A breaking story from Friday: The AJC is reporting that Georgia Tech's Gani Lawal will declare for the NBA draft. How does that affect Georgia Tech basketball for next year?
First of all, it's really too early to say. We don't know if PF Derrick Favors will return. I can only assume he's going, though, as he's projected as a top-10 pick. If he comes back, that would be a shock, but one Tech fan will be thrilled with.
Favors could become the focus of the offense for next year, but I don't think that will be enough to get him to return. As for Lawal, he was a solid player for Georgia Tech for three years. He worked on his game and became one of the better low-post players in the ACC. At 6'9'' he's not tall enough to be a pure down-low forward in the NBA. He's going to have to work on his perimeter shot and ball-handling skills.
What Lawal has going for him is a solid collection of low post moves and that he's a relentless rebounder.
For Georgia Tech, whether Favors leaves or stays, next year's team will be much more guard-oriented. Iman Shumpert, Mfon Udofia, Maurice Miller, Brian Oliver, and Glenn Rice Jr. will all be back, and 6'4'' four-star player Jason Morris also joins.
Inside, 6'8'' Kammeon Holsey, who sat out this year due to injury, will be available, and 6'11'' Daniel Miller should see time as well. Brad Sheehan, the 7'0'' senior is also another possibility inside. He provided good spot minutes.
If I were Paul Hewitt I'd be working on a plan without the services of Favors, but you never know.
This article is also available at All About Sports.