Former Kentucky Wildcats guard TyTy Washington is now an NBA player.
With the 29th-overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, Washington was selected by the Houston Rockets. It was a bit later than expected, but Washington still rightfully heard his name called in Round 1 while in attendance with his family. He’s set to join former Auburn Tigers star and No. 3 overall pick Jabari Smith.
As true freshman this past season, the 6-foot-3, 197-pound Washington averaged 12.5 points, 3.9 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game while shooting 45.1% from the field and 35.0% from deep. That included five 20-point games, as well as double-doubles in points/rebounds and points/assists, becoming the first Wildcat to do so since Ashton Hagans in the 2019-20 season.
TyTy Washington is a steal for the Rockets at 29. Washington was projected as a lottery pick when the season ended, higher before the injury. Makes plays in pick-and-roll, was a 40% 3-point shooter first half of the season. Love this pick -- and the Rockets' entire first round.— Jeff Borzello (@jeffborzello) June 24, 2022
For his efforts, Washington earned All-SEC Conference Second Team honors by both the league coaches and media members. He was a five-time SEC Freshman of the Week selection, a semifinalist for the Jerry West Award (nation’s best shooting guard) and a finalist for the Kyle Macy Award honoring the nation’s best freshman.
Though Sahvir Wheeler was UK’s primary point guard, Washington got plenty of run as the lead guard. In fact, when he started at point guard vs. Georgia with Wheeler out due to injury, Washington broke the school record for assists in a single game with 17 to go with 17 points in the win. The previous record-holder was former No. 1 overall pick John Wall with 16 vs. Hartford in the 2009-10 season.
Washington finished the regular season ranked first in the SEC and 31st nationally with a 2.43 assist-to-turnover ratio.
Unfortunately, multiple injuries suffered throughout the season led to Washington struggling down the stretch. Over his final eight games, Washington shot just 30/86 from the field (34.9%). He also suffered a knee bruise during a visit with the Washington Wizards that cut his workout short.
Had Washington remained healthy, he was tracking to be a top-10 draft pick and was even getting top-five buzz.
Here’s to hoping Washington can stay healthy and show the entire NBA what he’s truly made of.