Andrew Wiggins Just Another Canadian Trying to Make it

By M. Shannon Smallwood
Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports — Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Well, its official. Andrew Wiggins has decided to take his talents to the college basketball holy ground that is the Kansas Jayhawks.

Cue the squeaky birthday horn while confetti falls from ceiling.

Will college hoops and the world of basketball ever be the same? Clearly, the answer is yes. Wiggins is talented, but come on folks — he’s Canadian. Besides the Toronto Raptors, does anyone outside of Ontario even know what the heck basketball is, eh?

The answer is no. Plus, it’s Stanley Cup playoffs season and lord only knows that all of the channels available in Canada are tuned into NHL hockey. They don’t even have access to the same YouTube up there as the USA. So do they really know how good this kid is?

In fact, do the talking heads in college hoops even know how good this guy is?

When it comes to the great Canadians of basketball lore, Wiggins has the following to look up too: Steve Nash, Joel Anthony, Samuel Dalembert, Corey Joseph, Kris Joseph, Jamal Magliore, Andrew Nicholson, Robert Sacre and Tristan Thompson. Add to the mix the great Rick Fox and Bill Wennington and the first ever NBA star from up north in Bob Houbregs, and that’s still not the most amazing of lists.

So where exactly will Wiggins fall on this list? Only time will tell for sure. But, one would have to think the hype behind this kid is more along the lines of Dalembert than LeBron James.

This guy wants to see this kid live up to the billing. It would amazing if he was the second coming of Danny Manning in Kansas, and even greater if he chose to stay more than one year. But enough with the crowning of him as the savior of basketball.

He’s just another kid from Canada who probably couldn’t skate.


M Shannon Smallwood is a member of the Football Writers Association of America and the US Basketball Writers Association. Follow him @woodysmalls.

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