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MCW’s NBA Future: Did He Help Himself By Staying Two Years at Syracuse?

Did the time on the Hill improve his stock and where might he land?

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The most popular one and done player in Syracuse history dates back a decade to 2003 when Carmelo Anthony played a single season for the Orange, led them to the championship, and then left for the NBA Draft.

There are two rules that make a player eligible for the draft. The player must be at least 19 years old, he may not go directly from his senior year of high school to the NBA. For those with pro talent in high school, most play at least a year in college to strengthen the skills and improve their stock.

But should players be able to go directly to the NBA without the year in college? Dion Waiters is an example of an SU player who may have tested their pro stock directly from high school. Although talent-wise he may have been ready, the benefit of the two years in Syracuse was the mental maturity. For players who need to develop mentally and to polish their skills, college is the way to go.

Michael Carter-Williams may have been tempted to leave for the league after just one year on the Hill. He was obviously frustrated by his lack of playing time. But by staying two years at SU, he has undoubtedly improved his draft stock. This year’s lottery will take place on Tuesday, so let’s take a look at where the one-year college players and where they’re projected to go.

NBADraft.net

Ben McLemore, Kansas, 1st overall to Orlando

Nerlens Noel, Kentucky, 2nd overall to Charlotte

Anthony Bennett, UNLV, 6th overall to Sacramento

Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA, 10th overall to Portland

MCW, Syracuse, 13th overall to Dallas

Steven Adams, Pittsburgh, 28th overall to San Antonio

Archie Goodwin, Kentucky, 37th overall to Washington

Ricardo Ledo, Providence, 60th overall to Memphis

CBS Sports

Nerlens Noel, Kentucky, 1st overall to Orlando

Ben McLemore, Kansas, 2nd overall to Charlotte

Anthony Bennett, UNLV, 3rd overall to Cleveland

MCW, Syracuse, 6th overall to Sacramento

Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA, 10th overall to Portland

Draft Express

Nerlens Noel, Kentucky, 1st overall to Orlando

Ben McLemore, Kansas, 2nd overall to Charlotte

Anthony Bennett, UNLV, 3rd overall to Cleveland

Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA, 10th overall to Portland

Michael Carter-Williams, Syracuse, 12th overall to Oklahoma City (from Toronto)

* * *

If MCW does go to Dallas, he will be sitting behind Darren Collison who is only 26 years old. He in the prime of his career and after a decent 12 points per game season for the Mavericks, he may be the future point guard.

If Carter-Williams goes to Sacramento, he would be possibly the third string point guard behind Isaiah Thomas and Jimmer Fredette. Thomas is a quick, 24-year-old point guard from Washington who averaged just under 14 points per game for the Kings. Jimmer is a deep shooter from BYU, and MCW would have to once again wait his turn and scrap for minutes.

Oklahoma City has one of the best PG’s in the league in Russell Westbrook, a young, established team. That could be good for MCW, but he would be sitting behind Westbrook and Reggie Jackson. This would actually be a nice destination for Carter-Williams because he has the chance to learn from an established point guard like Westbrook. MCW’s best attributes are his height, length and long arms at the position.

No matter the destination, MCW definitely was helped by playing two years of college ball on the Hill. He raised his profile with the Final Four run, and learned how to begin polishing his game, while developing maturity as well.

Posted: Austin Pollack


20 Comments on this Post

  1. @Austin Pollack;

    I’ve said it before,I don’t think MCW is a team player and whereever he goes will be disruptive to that team.

    BY skipping the tryouts for the NBA combine. Is that what you’re referring to when you say “while developing maturity as well”?

    That decision is going to hurt him in the long run and teams will soon realize what MVW is all about.

  2. Pollack

    Ron,

    This is what I mean. I think he cares too much about himself and if he’s not starting and not getting minutes, he won’t be happy because he’s not growing his personal numbers.

    When I say “while developing maturity as well,” I mean what I said above. He has to be a team player. Teams will pick him for his skill and NBA teams will make changes to their system to win games. If MCW is running the point, he turns the ball over. The NBA is full of veteran, skilled players who know from experience how to take advantage of his mistakes.

    I think another big issue for MCW that goes along with the maturity is his need to be a big name. I think he wants to be the biggest name on his team.

    If he ends up in Dallas, those big names already there are aging like Dirk and Vince Carter. Dirk is 34 and the next big name in Dallas may be O.J. Mayo.

    Now let’s look at Sacramento. That team just can’t find success. They get high picks in the draft but there really isn’t a superstar name there. Maybe that’s a reasonable destination for him, but he may complain that he’s in Sacramento.

    Oklahoma City would be a DISASTER for him. Russell Westbrook becomes an unrestricted free agent in 2017 so MCW would be sitting behind him for a long time. He would have the opportunity to learn from Russell, but not really get more than seven or eight minutes per game. And Kevin Durant… he’s the big name in OKC, and he’s really the second name in America behind LeBron James.

    He’s going to have to go to a team that’s struggling to be a big team in the NBA. Like Golden State…Steph Curry has helped that team so much. He has helped turn a losing team into a winning team–the same goes for Durant when he went to Seattle/OKC…but he’s had a lot of help from Westbrook and those years with James Harden.

    AP

  3. @Pollack;

    Austin,I think that we’re saying the same thing here. He thinks only of himself and I agree he wants to b e a big name somewhere. In order for him to achieve his goals,he needs to swallow his pride and his ego to become humble and accept his role in life. He needs to control the ball better if he wants to stay a point guard. If I remember it correctly,he had the ball picked from him to many times and there were way to many turn-overs.

    Austin,I’m only expressing my opinion here and thank you again for responding to my earlier post. Your response is an honest one and I much appreciate it.

    Have a good day.

  4. Carlton

    He be lucky if he goes to OKC. He could play /w Westbrook in the back court as he could guard the SG spot /w his length an at the same time he could run the O and allow Westbrook to operate as a scoring guard on O.

    I’m tired of the bitching about the age rule. High school kids could go over sea’s or they could sign and play in the NBDL. When the NBA was allowing kids to come outta HS every kid seemed to be jumping to the league and what the NBA got was a water down product /w immature clowns running a muck of it. The NBA has every right to protect their product so tired of hearing otherwise. If the kids dont like it then pursue the other two outlets.

  5. I am reluctant to give an opinion as I surely am only a fan, not an expert. However IMO he is not that big a deal Potential, yes. If goes to any team, he will have to cut down on his turnovers, learn to shoot and score much much more and he will have to play the point less erratically. Dush off it good, but the rest of his game needs a lot of maturing. His 2 years at Syracuse helped him no question, but he needs more time with the coaches, no longer at Syracuse but anywhere he can get it. A 3rd year at SU would also have helped IMO.

  6. Carlton

    I agree. He needs to refine his game and the biggest thing is fix his jumper. Another yr would have been good for him at SU fosure.

  7. @Carlton;

    @Carlton;

    Couldn’t agree with you more about the kids coming out of high school and going to the NBA.

    Two players too look at,and before anyone complains,I know they’re good,take a look at Kevin Garnett and Koby Bryant. It took Garnett 5 years to get to the player he is today at center. Koby,well want can you say,only that he still believes that he is playing high school basketball and to this day hasn’t become a member of the adult world yet.

  8. I think MCW is a potentially disruptive player from a game and physical standpoint and will be the 1st PG taken in the draft and will definitely be a lottery pick. You may see team trade to draft him. He is tall but agile and quick. That cannot be taught. He plays D willingly and rebounds. He never took series off at SU on either end. He was not afraid to take big shot. As a full time player, he will develop his body and his outside shot (was LeBron 3pt shooter as rookie?). This will make it easier for him to get to lane and finish when he gets there. 3 years from now he will be premier PG in NBA. The NBA will draft on potential. No one has more upside that MCW and a healthy Nerlens.

  9. BigDipWisdom

    Great post n replies….

    1. @Al… was pretty correct in his assessment. He did not attack MCW personally, but provided insight on his bb ability… 8+ ast/gm doesnt equate to SELFISH, whatsoever? That’s actually called giving in American athletics.

    2. Draft combine was this week & replayed over the weekend: had any of you watched it, they cared little about passing and more about his uncanny (rondo like) wingspan of 6’7″+ MCW was given by GOD?

    3. At the NBA DRAFT COMBINE this week, MCW was in the middle of the pack athletically, but at his size, he’s the freak of nature made for NBA basketball. Why hes coveted? Big guards are the new “new”…..
    His competition is Trey burke 6’0″ in shoes, shane Larkin 40″ vertical 5’11” in shoes, pierre jackson 5’8″, the german/euro kid is 6’3″, goodwin & mclemore 6’4″????? Hes the Lebron of Pgs….

    4. The post: MCW definitely was helped by the 2nd season, leaving in the draft would have turned into a nightmare. NBDL, EURO, or stuck on a lottery team in playoff season. But SU was well represented in the 2013 playoffs:
    A. Melo..darn it
    B. Fab Melo? Does he know Carmelo hates Garnett fa saying ” your wife(LaLa) tastes like CHERIOS!” .. question: was fab defending KG that one bad squabble? Damn foreigners…doh!
    C. K-jo was on Brooklyn Nets bench
    D. Saw Donte Greene on the OKC bench this week too
    E. MCW doesnt wanna be a jonny flynn, wes johnson, looking for a job soon type?

    5. Yawn…long post! @Critics of MCW… jumpshot %s can be increased, he’s a All American talent projected as a lottery pick. People doubted Waiters, he’s rich now ? Lol…and a all rookie 1st teamer, playing the TOP COMPETITION IN THE WORLD… when you have the talent they want you…complain all you want about his character, Jordan is a prick too? He’s the next millionaire out of SU…

    6. HOW COME NOBODY QUESTIONED PUGH… MCW IS WAY MORE SUCCESSFUL…LESS INJURED AS WELL ….& THE FINAL FOUR???? You gotta have a chip at the highest level…stop being selfish SU fans we have 4 guard for 13-14…we’ll be okay

  10. BigDipWisdom

    When MCW gets the chance to work with a 24 sec clock, you’ll see his game profress tremendously… HCJB plays a way, far different from the NBA? For example: paul george, drafted by larry bird a season ago, is a horrible streak shooter, but won most improved 2013…proving your star can affect a games w/o terrific shooting… In the same way mcw is a stud

  11. Pollack

    Al,

    I’m going to have to respectfully disagree with you about the MCW and Nerlens Noel comment.

    This draft is full of talent. I think there is more name behind Noel than talent. Meaning, I think he’s “supposed” to be the first pick but I think there are better players there like Ben McLemore and honestly I’m a big Trey Burke fan. I think he’s a great shooter and a better point guard than MCW. Trey Burke can shoot, something MCW can’t really do well enough for a point guard.

    I agree that he will be a better shooter in the future. I like to compare him to Rajon Rondo. He didn’t come out as a three point shooter from Kentucky and even today he isn’t known for being a shooter but I do remember last year in the playoffs he hit some very clutch three pointers. MCW did that in college so he may develop a bit quicker in the NBA.

    Have a good week.
    AP

  12. Carlton

    Pollack, Noel has a ton of talent and upside. The only thing to worry about /w him is he is really light to be a PF or C in the NBA. Espn looked over PF’s and C’s from the past few drafts and Noel was 15-25 pounds lighter then those guys when they got drafted. I like bruke to but he’s not an elite athlete and hes undersized. I think he will have a good but not great NBA career.

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