This announcement was to be expected. Even though he hasn’t hired an agent, I expect him to stay in the draft. He’s a potential top 5 pick now, and Deon Thompson and Alex Stepheson should have no problem picking up the slack in his absence. Still, it was great having him at UNC, if only for a year.
What I’ll Miss: The pure athletic ability of this guy. He can take over a game physically, or he can use finesse, which he could afford to do alongside Tyler Hansbrough in the paint. He doesn’t have a lot of range, but his shots are nearly unblockable. There are question marks regarding his level of focus, but when he wants to play defense…wow, can he play defense.
Watch this play. There may be only five other players in the NCAA who can make this play, and four of them played in the Final Four this year:
What I Won’t Miss. The free throw shooting. Good lord, his free throw shooting was painful to watch, and I made no secret of that in this space. I also think he needs to play with more consistency, increase his shooting range, and put on about 20 more pounds of muscle.
NBA Draft.net has a more detailed analysis of Brandan Wright’s prospects. If he can make the necessary adjustments to his game, he definitely has the talent and the athleticism to perform well in the NBA. If he doesn’t, all bets are off. I wish him the best of luck, and to an extent I will root for whomever picks him. Unless it’s the Lakers.