Philly's Wayns, now with Sixers, shows he belongs in NBA

Bruce Bennett

A year after enduring a miserable final season at Villanova, Maalik Wayns is making a name for himself professionally.

Dick Jerardi, a writer for the Philadelphia Daily News, wrote a lengthy piece on former Villanova product Maalik Wayns and the impression he's making on the Philadelphia 76ers. In the article, there are many interesting quotes from a variety of sources, but below are a few of the remarks that stood out.

Philadelphia 76ers General Manager Tony DiLeo on what Maalik Wayns brings to the squad:

"He gives us an element we don't have. He gives us that quick point guard that can really push the ball. And on the other end, get up and defend fullcourt. We don't have a player like that."

Jay Wright on why he knew Maalik could make an impact in the NBA:

"I would always tell [NBA people] that he was the No. 1 free-throw shooter in the Big East. Usually, if you are a good free-throw shooter, you're a good shooter. He just had to take a lot of tough shots for us, especially at the end of the shot clock . . . A lot of times him taking a bad shot was better than our other options . . . Other teams knew that, especially in our league. Again, he had to play the point and be our leading scorer. If you look at the 2 previous years when he played with Corey Fisher and Corey Stokes and even Scottie Reynolds, he was outstanding in decision-making."

Wayns on his junior season at Villanova in which the Wildcats went 13-19:

"It was tough. We didn't make shots last year, including myself. I don't know what it was . . . It just wasn't fun. You start losing like that; it's just not fun, so you just look forward to getting the game over with. You don't even look forward to coming. I think we kind of got used to [losing] toward the middle of the season. That's something you don't want to happen. We got into a spiral and it's hard to get out of that."

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