Friday, April 19, 2013

Gonzaga's Kelly Olynyk declares for the NBA draft

Posted By on Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 11:40 AM

This shouldn't be a surprise — Gonzaga big man Kelly Olynyk has decided to forego his senior (fifth year) season for the Bulldogs and head to the NBA.

One site has Olynyk looking like a mid-first-round pick while others have posted him slightly higher than that. Either way, it looks like he's heading for a big pay day.

There will be some hardcore Zags fans shocked by this news, but they really shouldn't be. Olynyk's surprise breakout year after a strategic redshirt season showcased a perfect bouquet of NBA-ready skills, even if the Zags couldn't get far enough into the tournament to give him an even bigger stage to prove his worth to NBA executives. Also, and perhaps most importantly, the guy has already graduated. He's got his degree and a chance to play in the NBA — he'd be nuts to stick around.

Yeah, you could say that the Zags now have a some serious shoes to fill under the basket, considering Elias Harris is graduating. But don't forget — Sam Dower is back next season and so is work-in-progress Przemek Karnowski. Either of those guys could prove to be all WCC big men. So fear not, Zag Nation.

Now, let's remember the greatness of the best damn looking Canadian ever to hit the hardwood in Spokane. 

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About The Author

Mike Bookey

Mike Bookey was the culture editor for The Inlander from 2012-2016. He previously held the same position at The Source Weekly in Bend, Ore.