To the surprise of no one, UConn super-guard Kemba Walker has declared himself eligible for the upcoming NBA draft. (This is assuming there won’t be an NBA lockout and there will actually BE a draft, of course.) With that, the junior Walker will cut out of UConn and forgo his senior year to become an instant millionaire. Not bad for someone who will technically be labeled a college dropout.
But what did Walker have left to prove? Nothing really. He was able to put an entire team on his back and pretty much say “follow me” as UConn stormed through the brutal Big East Tournament and then rattled off six in a row in the NCAA Tournament to win the National Championship.
Going into the Big East Tournament, UConn was mostly an afterthought. A team that was good but not thought of as great or a title contender. But Walker, as previously stated on The CuT, kicked it into Beast Mode and totally took over. He gave UConn a face and an identity…not to mention a killer jump shot. Granted, the title game could have built a new gym for both teams with all the bricks that got tossed up that night, but in a few years who will remember that? UConn = 2011 National Champs. Walker was the driving force that made the players around him better.
Now he’ll get the opportunity to do that for a crappy NBA team. It’s doubtful he’ll last on the draft board until the most local teams’—Celtics or Knicks—turns are up but could New Jersey (soon to be Brooklyn) be an option? Maybe. The best place might be the Clippers so he could get paired up with Blake Griffin. That would be something to see!
Walker will leave behind a legacy as one of the greatest players in UConn history, a debate that will go in for quite a while in our state. Personally, I think Ray Allen might have been slightly better but that’s just one idiot’s opinion. Good luck to Kemba Walker! You made your adopted state proud… and ccanky Coach Jim Calhoun rich.