Although the Sacramento Kings' selection of Washington Huskies guard Isaiah Thomas narrowly kept the program from being shut out in the 2011 NBA Draft tonight, UW senior forward Justin Holiday was unfortunately not selected.
The 6-foot-6 Holiday averaged 10.5 points per game, 5.2 rebounds per game, 2.1 assists per game but anyone who has watched the Pac-10 closely knows that Holiday's biggest NBA strength will be on the defensive end - he was named Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year by Netscouts Basketball and deservedly so. That defensive ability is what reportedly had him on NBA radars, according to one report.
In terms of promising signs of improvement, what stood out is his dramatically improved 3-point shooting from rarely shooting them at all in his sophomore year to shooting three per game at a 35.9 percent clip in his senior year at the University of Washington. With summer league unlikely to occur due to extended NBA labor negotiations, the opportunity to showcase his skills to teams to make a roster before whatever training camp occurs will also be gone - his road to the NBA just got a lot tougher.
Justin's brother is 2009 first round draft pick Jrue Holiday, a who played at UCLA and was a 2009 first round NBA draft pick (17th overall) by the Philadelphia 76ers.