Myck Kabongo had a strange freshman year, but he is certainly wise to head to the NBA after just one season.
The sophomore for the Texas Longhorns declared for the NBA draft on Friday, according to ESPN.com. This was after playing in only 11 games this past season due to a 23-game suspension for receiving airfare and personal training while lying about it to the program. The point guard from Toronto was a five-star recruit out of high school (via Rivals.com).
In the 11 games that Kabongo played in, he did quite well for the Longhorns. He averaged 14.6 points, 5.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game during those final 11 games His best game was against the Oklahoma Sooners, as he scored 31 points while grabbing eight rebounds, six assists and four steals. He also shot 9-of-13 from the field in the overtime win.
The decision to go the NBA is certainly the right decision for Kabongo. Had he decided to stay at Texas, he would’ve been surrounded by the controversy of his suspension at all times. By declaring for the draft, he will be able to put the incident in the past and move on with his life as well as his career.
Foregoing his final two seasons will also give Kabongo the opportunity to get paid for his talents.
Fans and critics will argue that staying in college is about getting an education or bringing home a title for the school, but the fact of the matter is that there is no other place to make the kind of money that you can as a professional athlete. According to a piece by Forbes, the average NBA player makes approximately $5.15 million per year.
Can you really blame someone for wanting to take advantage of that opportunity?
Kabongo will also likely excel in the Association. At 6’1’’, he is a talented scorer at the point guard position, and is capable of having the offense run through him.
Point guards who can score have become quite popular in the NBA. With guys like Russell Westbrook and Kyrie Irving at the position, it’s not unrealistic to think Kabongo could thrive at the professional level.
At the end of the day, Kabongo made the right decision for his future. The NBA is a rewarding place for guys that can play at a high level, and there is little doubt that he can be one of those players.