Deuce not coming back
by Jim Buzzerd
The wait for West Virginia University guard Miles ‘Deuce’ McBride’s decision to return to play his junior season at WVU, or remain in the NBA draft arrived last Friday. Tony Caridi, the Voice of the Mountaineers, Tweeted Friday evening that McBride had informed head coach Bob Huggins of his intent to remain in the NBA draft. Thus ends the speculation of what McBride will do.
In the beginning McBride’s decision to enter the evaluation process seemed to be just that, an opportunity to be evaluated by NBA staffs so he would have a blueprint on what to work on during his junior season at West Virginia to make him a top pick in next year’s draft. Many of us feared that scenario had an excellent chance of not coming to fruition.
That is to say the chances of McBride raising his stock from a projected mid to late second round pick to a mid to late first round pick was realistic. While there was no reliable intel to confirm this, message board types had McBride’s decision handicapped that a second-round grade would make it more likely that he would return, and a first-round grade would make it more likely he would remain in the draft.
So, that’s where we are on July 5, McBride is deemed a first-round pick and will stay in the draft to find out. One would presume he has good reason to believe the feedback he’s received, because he wouldn’t be the first player to be courted by a team or two only to be left at the altar on draft day. Selfishly, I wanted to see Deuce play another season, he was a kid a fan could really get behind. He showed class on the court, and by all accounts, off it as well. He was all class in this decision-making process too.
During the NBA Combine in June, the 6-foot-2 McBride impressed to the point that his stock is considered to have risen — potentially allowing him to be selected in the first of the draft’s two rounds. First-round NBA draft picks are guaranteed the first two years of a four-year contract to begin their career, with the team holding an option on the third and fourth years of the deal. McBride was West Virginia’s leading scorer last season, averaging 15.9 points, 4.8 assists and 3.9 rebounds over 29 games.
A report surfaced over the weekend that guard Sean McNeil, who is also in the draft evaluation process, will return for his senior season, but official word has not been announced as of Monday. July 7 is the last day to decide. Should McNeil decide to return to school, West Virginia would have six guards on its roster for next season, four of which are seniors: McNeil, Taz Sherman, Kedrian Johnson and Malik Curry, a transfer from Old Dominion. Incoming freshmen Seth Wilson and Kobe Johnson are also guards.
McNeil and Sherman, along with emerging forward Jalen Bridges will give WVU some serious perimeter firepower that will help negate the loss of McBride.Deuce n