UConn in the NBA: Drummond keeps grabbing boards 

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Phoenix Suns forward Dario Saric (20) shoots around Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker (8) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Nov. 18, 2019, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

Phoenix Suns forward Dario Saric (20) shoots around Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker (8) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Nov. 18, 2019, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

As we are almost a month into the NBA season, let’s take a look at how former Huskies are performing at the highest level.

Kemba Walker, PG Boston Celtics: 

Consistent. Leader. Winner. I mean, what more can you say about this guy? Walker continues to impress in the green and white, commandeering the Celtics to an Eastern Conference best 11-2 record, continuing their hot streak, despite the loss of Gordon Hayward last week. He is averaging 23.4 points per game, surprisingly only 2.2 ppg less than last year on the Hornets. Considering the difference in star power and scoring talents on the Celtics versus last year’s Hornets, it is amazing to see Walker still produce at such a high rate. In the last four games, he has averaged 19.8 points, six assists and 3.2 rebounds per game with three steals and two blocks. Walker is shooting the deep ball more than ever, with 9.3 attempts per game. He seems to be handling the extra workload, as he is currently shooting 39.7 % from beyond the arc, on pace for his second highest rate in his career. The current No. 1 Celtics are in quite a groove, and Walker is definitely playing a major role as they continue to dominate the league. 

Andre Drummond, C Detroit Pistons: 

Speaking of producing at a high rate, Andre Drummond is proving himself to be the top board grabber in the game week after week. In his only game this week, he put up 16 points and grabbed 20 rebounds with two assists against the Charlotte Hornets. This game marks his 12th double-double of the season in 13 games played. He currently leads the league in offensive and defensive rebounds, and his performance won’t change anytime soon. Drummond is playing aggressively, as he currently is averaging two blocks per game, sixth-best in the league. However, he may be too aggressive, as he is on pace for career highs in turnovers (four per game) and personal fouls (4.2 per game). The Pistons are struggling, currently No. 11 in the conference. Fortunately, it is still early and Drummond, and the team can right the ship in an arguably weaker Eastern Conference. 


San Antonio Spurs forward Rudy Gay (22) shoots as Washington Wizards guard C.J. Miles (34) defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, in Washington. The Wizards won 138-132. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

San Antonio Spurs forward Rudy Gay (22) shoots as Washington Wizards guard C.J. Miles (34) defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019, in Washington. The Wizards won 138-132. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Rudy Gay, SF San Antonio Spurs: 

Despite the Spurs’ six-game losing streak at the time of writing this, Rudy Gay has quietly put up solid numbers. He has 12.2 points and six rebounds per game in that six game span. This past week, his best game was at home against the Trail Blazers, when he shot a very efficient 5-for-8 (and 6-for-7 at the free throw line) for 16 points in 23 minutes. Gay and the Spurs hope to turn things around soon as the Spurs are in danger of breaking their streak of 22 consecutive seasons of making the playoffs. 

Shabazz Napier, PG Minnesota Timberwolves: 

The most recent UConn grad of the five, Shabazz Napier remains out with a right hamstring strain, an injury keeping him from playing in eight straight games. He remains game to game with “questionable” or “doubtful” tags, and the most recent projection has him possibly returning for Saturday’s game against the Phoenix Suns. So far, he has averaged 7.8 points and 4.5 assists in six games played, and will watch from the sidelines for now as the Timberwolves take on the Jazz Wednesday night. 

Jeremy Lamb, SG Indiana Pacers: 

Another injured UConn alum, Jeremy Lamb has been sidelined for the last seven games for the Pacers. His timetable for return is still unknown. The Pacers had really benefited from his play before the injury, as he is averaging 17 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 2.2 assists. The team is 8-6 and No. 6 in the East, and should continue to play well upon Lamb’s return. 

Thumbnail photo courtesy of (AP Photo/Nell Redmond)


Jonathan Synott is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at jonathan.synott@uconn.edu

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