April 17, 2015
THE FLATS – Four Georgia Tech basketball alumni – Will Bynum, Jarrett Jack, Iman Shumpert and Thaddeus Young – represent three teams that will begin their quest for an NBA title when the league’s playoffs get underway this weekend.
Jack, who graduated from Tech last December and played for the Yellow Jackets in from 2002-05, and Young, who suited up for Tech in 2006-07, are both with the Brooklyn Nets, who open first-round play against the Atlanta Hawks at 5:30 p.m. Sunday. Shumpert, who played at Tech from 2008-11, and the Cleveland Cavaliers open first-round play against the Boston Celtics at 3 p.m. Sunday, while Bynum (2003-05) and the Washington Wizards open Saturday at 12:30 p.m. against the Toronto Raptors.
Jack, 31, began his 10th NBA season with his eighth team, the Brooklyn Nets. The Fort Washington, Md., native has played 80 games, starting 27, and has averaged 12.0 points and 4.7 assists in 28 minutes per game. Jack has 18 games of playoff experience, 12 of those with the Golden State Warriors in 2013, when he averaged 17.2 points and 4.7 assists while hitting 50.6 percent of his shots from the floor. Next to Chris Bosh, who has two NBA titles with the Miami Heat, Jack has the most playoff experience among active Tech alumni.
The other three Tech alums found their way onto playoff teams with whom they did not begin the season. Young, 27 and an eight-year veteran who played his first seven years in Philadelphia, began this year with Minnesota but was traded to Brooklyn in February. The Memphis, Tenn., native has averaged 13.8 points and averaged 5.9 rebounds while hitting 49.5 percent from the floor in 28 games for the Nets.
Shumpert, 24 and in his third NBA season, began the year with the New York Knicks, the team that drafted him in 2011, but was traded to the Cavaliers in early January. The suburban Chicago native has averaged 7.2 points and 3.8 rebounds in 38 games with the Cavaliers.
Bynum, who along with Jack helped Tech reach the NCAA championship game in 2004, played six seasons with the Detroit Pistons but was traded on the eve of the 2014-15 season to Boston, which released him. The 32-year-old Chicago natvive played overseas until Washington signed him to a contract in March. In seven games, he has averaged 3.1 points and 2.6 assists in 9.6 minutes off the bench.
ABOUT GEORGIA TECH MEN’S BASKETBALL
Georgia Tech’s men’s basketball team has completed its fourth year under head coach Brian Gregory. The Yellow Jackets have been a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference since 1979, won three ACC Championships (1985, 1990, 1993), played in the NCAA Tournament 16 times and played in two Final Fours (1990, 2004). Connect with Georgia Tech Men’s Basketball on social media by liking their Facebook Page, or following on Twitter (@GTMBK).