Wizards Get Their Game Changer
The image was spread throughout the District, an image that at its core was simple. The image showed the Wizards logo, the date 06.24.10 and the phrase "game changer".
On Thursday night at the WaMu Theatre in Madison Square Garden, the Wizards got their game changer in the form of 6'4, 195lb point guard John Wall.
In a league that has become more and more point guard driven, the Wizards just drafted one who in the words of Head Coach Flip Saunders might "revolutionize the point guard position because of his athleticism and his extremely intelligent mind-set as far as running a team."
It was this mind-set that helped the Wizards #1 overall pick turn Kentucky basketball around in just one season. Starting at point guard as a freshman at Kentucky, Wall was instantly put under the microscope. Displaying poise and maturity beyond his 19 years, Wall embraced the pressure of quarterbacking one of the winningest programs in college basketball. In just his second collegiate game, Wall calmly sank a game-winning buzzer beater against the Miami Redhawks. The game-winner sparked the Wildcats to a 29-2 record and a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Following his phenomenal freshman season, Wall turned pro with basically every media outlet labeling him as the number one pick in the upcoming draft.
It was at this moment when Wall’s hard working and humble side was magnified. With his college career behind him, Wall dedicated himself to improving his game before the draft, working out multiple times per day to prepare for draft workouts and the rigors of the NBA season.
"I was good enough for the high school level, and good enough for the college level, now I've got to prove I'm good enough on the NBA level. … You've got to get better at everything," said Wall after his workout with the Wizards last week. "I want to get better at playing harder on both ends, and my jump shot, that's going to be key for me getting to the next level."
While his workout schedule increased so did his humble behavior. Referred by his college teammate Patrick Patterson as always "cool, calm and collected" on the floor, that same nature showed off of it in his approach to the draft.
"It was a great experience to work out for them and meet some of the guys on the coaching staff that I didn't know," Wall said nonchalantly. "I'm just trying to impress them and show them what I can do. They know I can do a little bit, but I wanted to show them that I keep getting better, and hopefully they'll pick me first. ... It's been my dream since I was a little boy to be the No. 1 pick, but they haven't told me. I don't know who's going to be the guy. I just hope they pick me."
Today the boyhood dream has come true for Wall, bringing with it hopes that this game changer will one day fulfill the championship dreams of all Wizards fans.