High school basketball phenom, Andrew Wiggins, is drawing comparisons to Kevin Durant and Tracy McGrady. The Thornhill, Ontario native, Wiggins is favoring Florida State, Kentucky, UNC and Kansas for his likely one year of basketball service.
Currently at Hungington Prep, Wiggins went for 57 points on Thursday on 24-of-28 shooting, in a 111-59 win against Marietta College JV, apparently because he was angry about a Sports Illustrated article.
Wiggins took offense to a recent article by Pete Thamel of Sports Illustrated that highlighted the failures Canadian basketball players.
“In the past few years, more highly-touted Canadians have fizzled than sizzled in the states, victims of bad advice, fly-by-night prep schools and a lack of preparation on and off the court.”
Wiggins, presumably in response to the article, told the Herald-Dispatch following the game, “I just had to respond to the negative outlook that the reporter gave me,” Wiggins said. “I thought I responded well. Negative media happens to everybody. You just have to work through it and respond.”
It’s hard to agree with Thamel’s SI statement. Of course, not every Canadian propect, like any recruit, is guaranteed to be a hit and many of them are going to be misses. Texas teammates and Canadian natives Tristan Thompson and Cory Joseph were both 1st round draft picks in the 2011. Another Canadian, Michigan’s freshman Nik Stauskas, is taking the Big Ten by storm with his 3-point range. It seems unfair of Thamel to base his argument on players like Theo Davis, Olu Famutimi and Duane John, who signed with Gonzaga, Arkansas and Missouri, not top end recruiting schools like Duke, UNC, Kentucky.
Wiggins, a finalist for the Naismith Player of the Year award, has a lot of weight on his shoulders because he is the biggest Canadian basketball prospect ever. He undoubtedly will be the top pick in 2014 draft and especially if people continue to doubt him.