It's been a fruitful month for two former Huskies.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reported over the weekend that Gay and the Sacramento Kings agreed to a three year, $40 million deal. The Kings traded for Gay a little over one year ago, and it has been a boon for both parties. Gay had been a controversial player around the league- while with the Memphis Grizzlies, he became a scape goat for proponents of basketball's analytics movement. He lost his ability to shoot, his percentage sat at 41%.
Here's what Bill Simmons of Grantland had to say about Gay at the time.
"Most fans love the idea of Rudy: 6-foot-8, defends either forward spot, good athlete, unafraid at crunch time, seems like he's good. Nobody wants to accept that he's a horrific shooter-repeat, horrific-, who excels at posting up smaller defenders, and that's about it."
He was shipped up to the Toronto Raptors, only to see the Grizzlies reach the Western Conference Finals. Last season, after trading Gay, the Raptors emerged as a contender, winning the Atlantic Division. Rudy Gay looked like a player who couldn't quite there.
This summer, that began to change. He was selected to Team USA to compete in the FIBA World Cup alongside teammate Demarcus Cousins. USA would dominate, rolling their way to the gold medal. He and Cousins developed a new level of chemistry that has carried over to the start of the regular season. The Kings are the surprise of the league, jumping out to a 6-4 record, behind the play of their gilded duo. Gay is averaging 22.5 ppg, on 45% shooting and over 5 rpg. He has taken to playing the 2nd fiddle role behind Cousins for a small market team that has shown belief in him. The Kings locked up Gay at a fair price, lower than he would have gotten on the open market. Finally, it looks like Rudy Gay, one of the most talented players to ever come through Storrs, has a home in the NBA.
One of Connecticut's favorite sons, Kemba Walker, also got paid. The Charlotte Hornets and Walker agreed to a four year, $48 million extension. Walker was drafted by the then Bobcats in 2011 and has quickly helped turn the franchise around. Charlotte's win total has increased every season of Walker's career and they made the playoffs last spring. This season, they became the Hornets again, made a splash in free agency bringing in Lance Stephenson and look poised to contend for a division title. Walker has been the hub of it all. Through 10 games this season, he is averaging 15 ppg, 4 rpg and 4 apg. In the season opener agains the Milwaukee Bucks, Kemba did Kemba things, meaning he made big shots when his team needed.
Walker's contract is at a very fair price, considering the cap is about to increase in the next collective bargaining agreement. As the Hornets grow as a franchise, they will look back on the day they locked up Walker as a turning point.
Currently, there are seven other former Huskies on NBA rosters; Andre Drummond (DET), Jeremy Lamb (OKC), Caron Butler (DET), Ben Gordon (ORL), Shabazz Napier (MIA), AJ Price (IND) and Charlie Villanueva (DAL).
Ray Allen, Hasheem Thabeet, Jeff Adrien, Hilton Armstrong and Emeka Okafor are all currently free agents, but buzz around them exists and most should be signed once injuries start to hit the league.