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News » Washington Wizards Getting Inside 2008-07-26

Washington Wizards Getting Inside 2008-07-26

Washington Wizards Getting Inside 2008-07-26
JaVale McGee knew he'd have questions to answer when he ventured with his Wizards' teammates to Las Vegas. After all, following an aborted college career at Reno, some Nevadans questioned whether the young big man was ready to fast-forward his game to the pro ranks.

Having been the No. 18 pick in the draft, which carries with it close to a $2 million guarantee, the would-be college junior met the doubters in the Western media with a big smile.

"We talked about it as a family and decided this was a better situation," the 7-footer said of turning pro. "You never know what can happen next year. You can get injured."

McGee admitted he'd be working out with his Reno teammates this summer had he gotten the impression he'd be drafted lower than No. 20. But as many Nevadans do, he rolled the dice and came away a winner.

"Everyone said I'd go above 20," he noted. "That was the magic number for me."

Convincing his old fans he'd made a good financial decision was just part of the process in Las Vegas. McGee then set out to prove he could compete on the floor with some of the NBA's top young talent.

And that he did, averaging 8.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.6 blocked shots as the Wizards won two of five games in the NBA Summer League.

"It was a good experience for me, just getting a feel for the game and learning some things that will help me going forward," he insisted afterward. "The big difference between here and college is it's a much more physical game at this level."

And financially rewarding, too.

Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: July 26, 2008


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