Gaddy has become a faded star. The once highly touted point guard prospect in the country (ranked #2 by Scouts.com back in 2009) isn’t playing up to the level he should be and that he can. From what I know, this type of play isn’t like him at all, in high school Gaddy was aggressive back at Bellarmine Prep. Now when you see him play it’s a totally different story. He is more passive and he isn’t driving to the basket nor creating his own shots. He leaves you wanting more. He is capable of more.
The main excuse most bring up when you talk about Gaddy and his struggles is the ACL injury which happened last season and he missed most of the year. However, he looks like he has come back to full strength and yet things still are not the same for him, or as they should be for him.
When UCLA and USC came into town this past week Abdul was a total non-factor. In the first game he scored 7 points and had 5 assists but he also turned the ball over 4 times. He does get his minutes though playing 34 against both the Bruins and Trojans yet not much was different against USC scoring 6 with 6 assists but with 3 turnovers. A key takeaway from Saturday night’s game for Gaddy was his inability to make 3’s he was 0-4.
Transitioning into an all-around point guard could be another reason why Gaddy is struggling. In high school, Gaddy was the go-to-guy, the one to make his shots, to drive and be aggressive. Here at UW he tends to set up the plays and looks to get others involved. This could quite possibly reflect the way Romar is teaching him to play or the way he feels he needs to play.
Yet one thing is certain, this has thrown off Gaddy’s game. Will he bounce back with only a few more games left? Can he make a push to become that highly talented player we know he can be next year? It remains to be seen but as he continues to struggle while this season is still in affect his draft stock is falling quickly.
For his sake and his future in the NBA he needs to get back to playing like the old Gaddy. This may not happen with this young and talented roster. The rest of the season and next season is what Gaddy has left and while we have seen quick risers like Wroten and strong improvements from the unexpected in Shawn Kemp Jr. Gaddy can still be a major factor on this team and he surely does not want to get left behind. He may not be able to be that leader he once was in his Bellarmine days but he can still contribute immensely and be one of the top point guards in the Pac-12.
Next week, I will continue on the topic of Abdul by getting the opportunity to sit down with 3 of his former teammates at Bellarmine Prep who understand Gaddy’s game and get their opinions onto why he has struggled so much during his time at UW. The verdict from me, is that he leaves you wanting more.