The Washington Wizards have been pretty abysmal over the last two-and-a-half seasons, compiling a 28% win percentage over that timeframe.
That said, they aren't lose-to-a-college-basketball-team bad. So when former Maryland basketball head coach Gary Williams said that this year's Kentucky Wildcats could beat this year's Washington Wizards -- or even have a chance of doing that -- it caught some attention.
"I think one game -- Kentucky couldn't play in the NBA or anything like that -- but one game at Rupp Arena, I wouldn't be surprised to see Kentucky win one game. Because you're gonna have five players off that team playing in the NBA, and probably playing significant roles in the NBA. And that's why I say that, for one game," he continued.
No, Gary. No. No. No. Kentucky could not beat the Wizards, even on its home court, even on the third day of the Wizards playing back-to-back-to-back games. Not even one in 10 games.
The flawed logic here is that Kentucky, which has one of the best teams in recent NCAA history, including five bona fide future NBA players on its roster, only has five bona fide future NBA players on its roster.
Guess how many the Wizards have? Fifteen! (And not 15 guys who wouldn't be on another NBA roster if not for Washington.)
Yes, the Wildcats feature several future NBA stars. Terrence Jones, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Anthony Davis, Doron Lamb and Marquis Teague will almost assuredly play at the next level. But they aren't ready to run with the big boys today. And they presumably won't be ready to run with the big boys as NBA rookies, either.
The NBA strength and conditioning -- preparing players to play 48-minute games 82 times a year -- is much more stringent than the conditioning at the college level. A guy like Trevor Booker or Nene Hilario in the Wizards' frontcourt would eat Davis' lunch and give him a wedgie before Davis could blink. John Wall is so head-and-shoulders better than anyone in Kentucky's backcourt, the Wizards' point guard would embarrass the college kids.
The other part of this equation? How about the fact that the Wizards would go down in the history books for losing to a college team? The pride alone would lead the Wizards to win by 15 easily.
Obviously this is a hypothetical that can be argued to death without ever being resolved. But frankly, it's bizarre that Williams, who watches a ton of NBA games, would think that's a possibility.