Apr 22, 2013, 8:25 PM EDT
Louisville guard Russ Smith told members of the media that he will announce his decision on whether or not he’ll enter the NBA Draft on Wednesday.
Smith, who had been reported to be entering the draft shortly after Louisville’s victory in the national championship game two weeks ago. Since that story, in which his father was the one who started the speculation, Smith has been said to be “50/50″ on which way he’ll go.
Smith went from a reserve guard who barely played as a freshman and nearly transferred to being the offensive focal point of a team that has been to back-to-back Final Fours and won a national title in the last two seasons. He averaged 18.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.9 assists and was one of the top defenders in the nation, averaging 2.1 steals per game in 2012-13.
Russ Smith says he hopes to make a decision on the NBA on Wednesday.
— Eric Crawford (@ericcrawford) April 22, 2013
Russ Smith: “I been losing sleep” over decision to stay or go.
— Eric Crawford (@ericcrawford) April 22, 2013
(CLICK HERE to follow along with who is turning pro and who is returning to school.)
The reviews on Smith’s pro prospects have varied. He’s got the ability to score, and his shot selection improved from last season to this season — his shooting percentage went from 35.6 percent in 2011-12 to 41.4 this season — and he has the lateral quickness and ball-hawking abilities to stick in the league defensively, but being in that 6-foot to 6-1 range, his ability to play the two-guard is suspect.
He may need to improve his point guard skills to hang at the next level, but with junior college transfer Chris Jones and freshman Terry Rozier slated to come in next season to replace Peyton Siva, who knows if he’ll get the chance? It really does look 50/50 at this point.
The deadline for underclassmen to enter the NBA Draft is April 28.
Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten
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