Chris Wright spent the past two weeks proving NBA scouts wrong about his NBA potential and leadership without ever stepping out onto the court.
For the past four years, the Georgetown Hoyas point guard has been labeled small and not enough of a scorer by NBA scouts looking for any reason to dismiss his proven abilities.
After breaking his wrist in a game against Cincinnati back in late February, NBA scouts and doubters found out just how wrong they were.
Since reeling off eight straight Big East wins to match their longest consecutive Big East winning streak since the 2006-07 season when the Hoyas made the Final Four, Georgetown has proceeded to lose their last four games in Wright's absence.
Without their distributor and leader of the offense on the floor, the Hoyas have become one-dimensional, with Austin Freeman being forced to (unsuccessfully) carry the team.
While Georgetown's scoring output dropped to 51.5 ppg (down from 72.2 ppg during their eight-game Big East winning streak), Wright's value has never been as a pure scorer; rather, Wright is the classic pass-first smart point guard who distributes the ball and makes the players around him better.
Without him, the Hoyas haven't just struggled, they've been down right uncompetitive save for a 10-minute second-half stretch in a home loss to Syracuse. His numbers wont blow you away. In fact, they may only embolden the doubters.
There is nothing wrong with a solid 13.1 points, 5.4 assists and 1.5 steals, but such numbers aren't going to win Wright player of the year honors either.
The thing is, Wright doesn't care about those numbers, it's the win column that counts and with Wright at his take-charge, push-the-tempo best, Georgetown raced up the Big East standings. Thanks to Wright and backcourt running mate Freeman, the Hoyas notched wins over Louisville, Marquette, St. John's and more impressively, Missouri, Syracuse and Villanova on the road.
In fact, it was the Villanova game where Wright showed his true value and grit.
With deft ball handling, astute decision making and voracious defense, Chris Wright helped Georgetown overcome Nova's vaunted full court press and shut down the Wildcats' explosive perimeter scoring, guiding Georgetown to a 69-66 win; he didn't even need to score a point to do it.
Classic Chris Wright basketball.
NBA teams will regret passing on drafting Wright who is projected as a mid to late second round pick. But before NBA teams have to deal with him, there are quite a few tournament teams—most notably USC or VCU—who are wishing he wasn't ready to return to the court just yet.
Look for Georgetown to make a deep run in the NCAA tournament and for Wright to propel himself up the NBA draft boards.
If you don't believe me, take it from our former president, Mr. Bill Clinton:
"I still think they can go deep in the NCAA tournament, especially once they get Mr. Wright back!" courtesy of CasualHoya.com