Point guard played role in Boynton's return

When Kenny Boynton was weighing his options after his junior season, the advice from the NBA side was always the same. He needed to show what he could do as a point guard. Listed at 6-2, there has never been any doubt that Boynton can score, but there are questions about his size working as a two-guard in the NBA. He'll get his chance to work more as the point guard this season.

"In practice, when I'm playing point guard, I'm pretty comfortable," Kenny Boynton said. "I don't think it'll be much of a transition. I'm definitely looking forward to playing the point guard position."

Boynton won't take over the point guard position. After three-year starter Erving Walker graduated last season, junior Scottie Wilbekin is expected to step into the starting role and run the offense. When he comes out of the game, Boynton should get increased time with freshman point guard Braxton Ogbueze also getting minutes.

It's not a surprise that Boynton said he's more comfortable at the shooting guard position, but the increased time at point guard should help his future at the next level.

"For him at the next level as a guy that's 6-2, I think NBA people do want to know that the guy has the ability to play back there," Florida coach Billy Donovan said. "That could help his growth and development as a player beyond being here at Florida."

Scoring hasn't been in question for Boynton. He has scored a total of 1,589 points in his first three years on campus and will do damage to multiple categories in the record book throughout his senior season. He has to be able to show that he can run the point guard position and manage a team.

It's more than just dribbling the pass to midcourt and passing it. In Donovan's offense, playing point guard will create some different shots for Boynton. The high screens will put him in positions that don't usually happen when he is the shooting guard.

"Playing the point guard, I think I've gotten to the hole more coming off screens," Boynton said. "I'm attacking the big man and have got a couple layups like that. From the two-guard, I didn't get many drives to the rim like that."

Part of it comes by being smarter with the ball. When he's handling the ball more at the point guard position, Boynton's decision making is even more important. He spent part of the offseason in Las Vegas playing pickup games at camps with some of the best college basketball players in the country.

With increased athleticism on the court at all times, it forced Boynton to make good decisions in a hurry. There wasn't time to think or react to what's happening in front of him. He has to make quick, effective decisions in a hurry.

"It's slowing the game down in your head," Boynton said. "When you speed it up, that's when turnovers come."

This isn't the first time he'll be seeing time at point guard. During his freshman season, the guard depth wasn't good for Florida. Florida brought Nimrod Tishman in from overseas to take minutes as the backup point guard, but it didn't take long to realize he wasn't capable of doing that.

When sophomore point guard starter Erving Walker had to rest, Boynton was pushed into the point guard role. It didn't happen much because of how often Walker was on the floor, but Boynton learned to play the position.

His three years of learning the offense also helps him understand the role of each position on the floor.

"This is not something that's new to him," Donovan said. "He has done this before."

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