Reading CRP's comments on closing out the season and looking ahead to next year really got me fired up, which, as you can all imagine, is really saying something as the sting of Friday night is still in my mind. I am really looking forward to the move to the ACC, the new guys rising to this greater challenge, Blackshear ascending to his rightful place (come on, buddy, it's now or never!), and, really, starting a new UofL family as the players shift, even if the L1C4 remains.
But one thing stood out: CRP's real talk about Montrezl and draft numbers. Sure it's hard to pass up a chance to go to the NBA regardless of the circumstances - it's still the professional league - but is riding the bench really what a player wants? Sure, it might be paying your dues as a rookie, but I like to think that Montrezl really just wants to dunk about 400 times whenever he sees the ball. There's still room for growth and development if he stays, as Pitino mentioned, and that leadership role would help that as much as the conditioning and drilling. And we would have that big brother the team needs as we make this transition. It's win-win.
I know it's not likely, but think of how good it felt, how reassuring it was, how wonderful the surprise to learn that Russ was going to finish the journey with us. And think of all he got out of the experience.
Obviously, we all wish Montrezl the best either way, and we're so proud and grateful. Saying goodbye to so many is hard, though. So help me put this out into the universe: One More Yearzl!