No surprise here: Jeremy Lamb leaving UConn for the NBA

No surprise here: Jeremy Lamb leaving UConn for the NBA

By Matt Norlander | Staff Writer
Connecticut sophomore Jeremy Lamb -- a potential lottery pick -- made his intentions clear Tuesday. He'll be entering June's NBA draft.

"It was a difficult decision, but after much prayer and discussion with my parents, I feel that it's in the best interest of me and my family to declare myself eligible for the upcoming NBA Draft and pursue my dream of playing professional basketball," Lamb said in a statement.

The 6-5 All-Big East guard from Norcross, Ga., averaged 17.7 points and 4.9 rebounds per game as a sophomore. He's the definition of NBA potential: sprouting with length and can jump out of the gym. The quiet-but-effective wing didn't have as much impact this season as some expected, but he was still undeniably one of the best talents in the league.

MORE: 2012 NBA Draft early entry watch list

"It's never easy to lose a great player from your program, but Jeremy has a unique opportunity that he needs to take advantage of," UConn coach Jim Calhoun said in a statement. "He's been a great kid to coach for the past two years ... his teams have won 52 games, been to two NCAA tournaments, and won a national championship. I look forward to him developing into a terrific player in the NBA and secondly, as he's promised me, to come back and finish his degree."

Without Lamb, UConn probably doesn't win a national title in 2011. He was the perfect complementary player to Kemba Walker on that unlikely championship team. According to UConn, Lamb is the 14th UConn player under Calhoun to leave school early. All but one were first-round draft picks.

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