Villanova's Reynolds enters NBA draft, for now

Reynolds
Reynolds
Posted: April 22, 2009

The reality of the situation is, Scottie Reynolds has nothing to lose by testing his worth. So he is going to see where he stands. It might lead directly to the next level. Or it could mean returning to Villanova for his senior season.

Either way . . .

"It's a win-win," he said, correctly.

The junior guard, who averaged 15 points a game for a team that made it to the Final Four and has scored more than 1,600 career points, has decided to put his name in the NBA draft pool.

He has until June 15, or 10 days before the draft, to withdraw. As long as he doesn't hire an agent, he can retain his eligibility. And he is completing his class work, to remain OK academically.

In the meantime, he can interview and/or work out for any prospective employer, at the team's expense. So he should be able to find out just how viable the interest for his services is.

"I've been talking to [coach Jay Wright] for a couple of weeks, looking at all my options," Reynolds said. "We made a decision together that's the best decision for myself . . . to pursue the dream that I've been working on for a very long time. [The people here] have put me in an unbelievable position for me to conquer that dream.

"I'm not looking at it as an experience. I'm taking this very, very seriously, see where everything is, see if that's good enough. Hopefully, I can prove that."

And if not . . .

"If I come back, that would definitely be a blessing [too]," he said. "I'd embrace it, knowing what kind of leader I'd have to be. I'd feel good about that."

So far, 40 other underclassmen have declared. Most have not hired agents, either. And some big names have not announced anything yet. That doesn't include all the seniors and foreigners who will be available.

Keep in mind that only first-round picks receive guaranteed contracts.

"It would be smart for him to experience NBA workouts," Wright said in a release. "This will enable him to see where he fits in the draft process this year and give him a better understanding of what it takes to play at that level."

Reynolds was the Big East Rookie of the Year in 2007. This past season, he made third-team all-conference. One of two players in Big East history to score 40 or more twice, he of course made the last-second shot that beat Pittsburgh in that memorable East Regional final.

"If it goes my way, great," Reynolds said. "If I come back, I'll be happy as well. I'm putting everything into it. There's times when you have to think about yourself, know what's best. That's how I approached it.

"Everybody who puts their name in the hat feels confidence in themselves to perform at that level. You can never fear failure. When you're young, the plan is always to be a 4-year player. It's about improving, pushing yourself, never being satisfied. Right now, I'm going full speed. That's life. Changes are going to happen. It's how you deal with them. Change is good sometimes. Hopefully everything's going to work out for everybody."

Thaddeus Young became a Sixer after 1 year at Georgia Tech. Teammate Lou Williams turned pro right out of high school. Reynolds has spoken with both of them.

"They said it's a different world," Reynolds said. "It's not like college. Know what you're getting yourself into. They were letting me know so I wouldn't get caught by surprise."

He has 55 days to figure it out one way or the other. *

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