Washington Huskies In The NBA: Justin Holiday


Apr 12, 2013; Washington, DC, USA; Philadelphia 76ers shooting guard Justin Holiday (14) shoots the ball as Washington Wizards power forward Cartier Martin (20) and Wizards point guard John Wall (2) defend in the fourth quarter at Verizon Center. The 76ers won 97-86. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Grade: B

Statistics: 9 games, 15.8 minutes, 4.7 points, 1.7 assists, 1.6 rebounds, 0.7 blocks per game

Obviously, these grades are completely subjective. I like to think they’re based off equal parts performance and expectation. Spencer Hawes earned a “B+” while playing a full season of games and averaging about 11 and seven. I’m giving Justin Holiday a “B” because nobody expected him to be playing in the NBA this season.

He averaged 17.3 points and 5.3 rebounds in the D-League before getting called up to the 76ers to join Hawes and his brother, Jrue. In two of his final three games with the Idaho Stampede, Holiday scored 28 and 36 points, respectively. He clearly earned his promotion, but it is somewhat unprecedented for a college senior to go from undrafted, to starring in the D-League, to holding his own in the NBA.

He was only able to play in nine games for the Sixers due to the late nature of his call up, but performed well enough to probably earn him a roster spot next season. After playing more than seven minutes just once in his first five games, Holiday didn’t play less than 20 in his last four. He finished the season on a high note, collecting career high points, assists and blocks in his final games.

We all saw the drastic improvements Holiday made before his senior season at UW. It makes one wonder if he has that in him again. Can Holiday go from NBA role player to key contributor? After going from undrafted to the NBA in one season, I wouldn’t put it past him.

As Jrue continues to mold into one of the NBA’s top point guards, Justin will have some high family expectations to live up to. With Jrue at the point, he’ll certainly have some clean passes to handle as he develops.