Athletes don’t stop repping the UW after they leave Seattle. Welcome to this week’s edition of Pro Husky Highlights, where The Daily recaps the exploits of former Washington athletes.
Isaiah Thomas: NBA, New Orleans Pelicans
Washington men’s basketball legend Isaiah Thomas signed a 10-day contract to join the NBA’s New Orleans Pelicans. Thomas last played in the NBA with the Washington Wizards early in 2020. Thomas’ NBA career has been illustrious. He is a two-time All-Star and was named second-team All-Pro in 2017.
Thomas’ All-Star years in Boston were his most productive in the NBA, averaging 22 and 28 points per game in the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons, respectively. He led the Celtics to the number one seed in the 2017 playoffs and to the Eastern Conference finals. During the second round of those playoffs, Thomas scored a career-high 53 points against the Wizards on his late sister’s birthday.
The Tacoma, Washington, native played three years at the UW, averaging 16.4 points per game. Thomas’ most memorable moment as a Husky came in the championship game of the 2011 Pac-12 Tournament. With time expiring in overtime against Arizona, Thomas hit a step-back jumper to beat the Wildcats and send the Huskies to the NCAA tournament. Washington basketball retired Thomas’ No. 2 back in 2018.
Jaden McDaniels: NBA, Minnesota Timberwolves
A younger Husky hardwood star is beginning to make a name for himself in the NBA. Rookie forward Jaden McDaniels has become a consistent scorer off the bench in Minnesota this season and has begun to break into the starting lineup in recent weeks. McDaniels has been excelling recently, scoring at least 10 points in five of his past six games. He is averaging 10.1 points per game in the T-Wolves’ past 10 contests.
Although McDaniels’ one season at the UW was not as successful as many had hoped, he still showed that he was a bona fide star on the court. During his time in the purple and gold, McDaniels averaged 13 points and 5.8 rebounds a game. McDaniels’ career-high scoring output as a Husky came in a non-conference game against Ball State in which he scored 22 points.
Danny Shelton: NFL, New York Giants
Free agency is in full swing in the NFL, with many players finding new homes. Former Husky Danny Shelton is no exception. The defensive tackle signed a one-year deal with the New York Giants this past week, which will be his fourth stop in the NFL.
Shelton was a beast during his time at Washington, racking up 200 tackles in four seasons. His senior season was something to behold. He recorded 94 tackles, 17 of which came in one game, as well as nine sacks. Shelton’s exploits earned him first-team All-America honors as well as being the 12th pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Reach reporter Nick Lombroia at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @lombroia
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