2011 NBA Draft: Isaiah Thomas Declares Early, Who Steps Up?
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Washington Huskies guard Isaiah Thomas has decided to forgo his senior season and enter the upcoming NBA draft.
The main question that pops in to Husky fans' head is who can step up and replace a player like Thomas. He averaged nearly 17 points last season along with 6 assists and finally blossomed into a true point guard.
Now who can replace him as a leader and as a face of the team?
Gaddy averaged nearly 4 assists per game before being sidelined due to an ACL tear in his left knee
With Abdul Gaddy returning from his injury and starting his junior year next year, he shows experience and is a true floor general when healthy.
Key words being 'when healthy' he missed the entire Pac-10 season due to an ACL tear in his left knee.
However, I believe he could come back stronger than ever and reconnect his chemistry with the rest of the team. Leadership should always start at the point guard position.
Gant proved he can spot up from the arc and knock them down
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Another option could be senior forward Darnell Gant who established himself as a streaky scorer this past season.
There would be games where he would disappear, however coming in to his senior year as a Husky, his good games should outweigh the bad.
At a press conference following the North Carolina loss, Gant stated that he would take his game back to the post where he was as a redshirt freshman.
After losing senior forward Matthew Bryan-Amaning, the Huskies need another option in the post other than Aziz N'Diaye.
Ross averaged 8 points per game last year as a freshman, that average could easily be doubled next season
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Another face of the team could be sophomore guard Terrence Ross as he will most likely be the main scoring threat for the offense.
After losing the two top scorers on the team, I have no doubt Ross could step up and average 15 plus points per game next season.
He will be that "wow" factor next year after showing his NBA type moves and drives to the bucket that left the crowd in awe.
Tony Wroten Jr.
Wroten was rated the fifth best point guard in the nation and the 16th best player in the class of 2011 by ESPN
I will throw Wroten in here as a definite wild card option. Wroten shows all the intangibles you want to see in a college point guard; size, quickness and an uncanny passing ability.
I'm calling this a wild card because a leader should be someone who has been with the team a couple years and it might be too much to ask from an 18 year old athlete.
However, his minutes next year just shot up after Thomas declared early so Husky fans await to see what he can do at the college level.