Fighting for a Spot

Two-time All SEC performer Kennedy Winston sat at Wings in Mobile the night of the NBA draft and watched as unproven high schoolers and foreign players went off the board. When the last name was called, and Winston still was not taken, the obvious question was "why?"

Kennedy Winston joined Chris Stewart in the Morning Tuesday to discuss not being drafted and what lies ahead.

"Some teams said that my agent was not acting properly," Winston said. "Also, I didn't take the physical at the Chicago pre-draft camp. No one can point out one single thing."

Winston did about the only thing he could at that point. He fired his agent, Lou Fabiano, and hired Mo Williams' agent Mark Barterstien of Chicago. He then joined the Memphis Grizzlies' summer league team.

The summer league experience was a good one for Winston. He helped lead his team to a 6-1 record and is now fielding offers from up to 15 NBA teams to attend their preseason camps in October.

"My agent tells me the three teams most interested in me are Seattle, Phoenix and San Antonio," Winston told Stewart. In fact, Winston will work out for the World Champion Spurs next Wednesday.

This whole ordeal has not seemed to shake Winston's confidence. He is not just concerned with making a team, he's also looking for where he might get the most playing time. Teams are telling him he will be a two guard in the league, and he does possess an ability that many in the NBA are lacking. He can make a mid-range jumper.

The problem for Winston is that his case is not unique. You don't even have to venture outside the SEC to find players who were good-to-great college players with NBA ability, but who were not drafted.

There are only so many NBA roster spots available for rookies and Winston will not only be fighting with those players who were drafted in the second round but also those undrafted players like Anthony Roberson, Matt Walsh, and Kelenna Azubuike (just to mention some of the SEC guys) for those spots.

When someone leaves college eligibility on the table to chase his NBA dream and then is not drafted, it doesn't take a genius to say that he made a mistake.

"I want to make something good come out of this," Winston told Stewart. Knowing Winston's work ethic and what he's already been through as a member of the Crimson Tide, I'm sure he will.

I'm also sure that all Alabama fans will be rooting Winston on, all the while trying not to think about just how good this year's Tide team would have been had he decided to play his senior year.

**Producer Tom Canterbury can be heard on Chris Stewart in the Morning weekdays from 7-9 a.m. and The Sports Breakdown with Vince Ferrara weekday afternoons from 3-6 p.m. on Sports Radio 1420 the Tusk in Tuscaloosa. He can be reached at ThomasCanterbury@clearchannel.com.


BamaMag Top Stories