Jeff Green's Senior Day?
Georgetown honored its three seniors on Saturday afternoon--reserve forwards Sead Dizdarevic and Kenny Izzo, and manager Zelos Hill--but many in the crowd probably wondered if they were watching junior forward Jeff Green for the last time inside Verizon Center.
Coach John Thompson III was asked if he thought about taking Green out of the game in the final seconds, so he could get one last ovation from the home crowd, in case he decided to forgo his senior season for the NBA.
"I did not consider that," Thompson said.
Green was asked if the game was a little more emotional for him. He seemed genuinely surprised by the question.
"For who? Who, me?" Green said. "Nah, I just wanted to win. I didn't really think about that too much. I just wanted to get the win for Kenny and Sead, not really thinking about myself too much."
In fact, Green seemed more concerned about putting the focus back on the two people who were definitely playing in their final home game. He spent most of his post-game interview talking about how happy he was for Izzo and Dizdarevic, who are the only players left from Craig Esherick's final season as coach--when the Hoyas went 13-15 and their season ended with a loss in the Big East tournament. Green had promised them that he would get them into the game against Connecticut.
"That's just typical Jeff," Izzo said. "He's been saying stuff like that all week. Even during the game, when we were out there in the last minute. I think he's still saying it right now. We're all pretty close on the team."
Izzo's Senior Day got off to a rocky start, but ended well. He was introduced, he accepted his silver bowl and lifted it up to show the crowd, and then started to walk away--leaving Thompson behind on the court. Thompson had to pull him back for the traditional player-and-coach picture. Didn't Izzo know he was supposed to stop and pose?
Izzo shrugged. "You only go through that ceremony once," he said.
[That is, unless you are Darrel Owens, the fifth-year senior who was one of the standouts on last year's team. Owens was honored at Senior Day 2005 AND 2006.]
Izzo entered the game with 51.5 seconds remaining, and quickly attempted--and missed--a three-pointer. He admitted that Thompson probably didn't want him to take that shot ("It was a little early in the shot clock," Izzo said) but he figured that he had the crowd rooting for him, so why not.
He then made up for the miss by running down and blocking a lay-up attempt from Jerome Dyson, the Huskies' leading scorer.
"It caught me off guard," Green (118 career blocks) said of Izzo. "I was about to jump, but he just rose up and blocked the shot."
Said Izzo (one career block), "I'm glad he let me have it."
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