There is excitement and then there is reality. Former George Washington basketball stalwart Isaiah Armwood expressed both following his pre-draft workout for the Wizards on Tuesday.
For one, former teammate Maurice Creek also participated in the second of two workout sessions at the Verizon Center ahead of Thursday's NBA Draft. Armwood's inside presence and Creek's shooting touch led the Colonials to the NCAA Tournament last season. Alas, the Wizards split up the "Zeke and Creek" tandem during the various full court and 3-on-3 drills.
"It was fun. I wish [Maurice] would have played on my team. We would have a little bit of an advantage," Armwood cracked.
Getting a chance to play for NBA decision makers also qualifies as an advantage, or at least an opportunity. Armwood previously had meetings with the Nuggets, Kings and Heat. The Wizards make it four. It's doubtful there will be more with the draft only 48 hours away.
It's also a long shot that the lengthy 6-foot-9 shot blocker hears his name called during the televised event.
"Only 60," said Armwood, referencing the number of picks during the two-round draft. "It's a possibility, but no, I'm not going to plan [on getting drafted]. Do I think I'm good enough to get drafted? Yeah, but I might not. I'll take it as I go. If I don't, then wait until Friday and see what happens next."
The Baltimore native, Montrose Christian product and former Villanova transfer brings defense and strong hoops instincts. He does so in a body that weighs 209 pounds. Whether Armwood ends up as a small or power forward, he knows adding bulk is a must.
"I believe I have the ability to play both [positions], but no matter what position [teams] see me as, I have to get a lot stronger [going against] players in this league. They all said that."
Armwood should latch on with a team for either the Las Vegas or Orlando Summer League, which serves as a showcase for NBA teams and those from leagues around the world.
"Overseas is definitely my second option if the NBA doesn't work out," said Armwood, who has talked about that route with former GW players and international veterans Pops Mensah-Bonsu and Chris Monroe. "I've been having a conversation about that a lot. Europe is definitely a possibility."
After two seasons playing for the Foggy Bottom program, Armwood acknowledged why he believes he has this opportunity at all.
"I don't think I would be here right now if I stayed at Villanova. Nothing against Villanova, I loved it there, but I just think I was limited with certain things I did at Villanova. GW just gave me more opportunities. It opened up a lot of doors for me," he said.
While Armwood freely talked about the professional big picture talk, Creek had a different focus on Tuesday. The Oxon Hill native had yet to participate in a pre-draft workout. He would worry about any specific plans some other day.
"You never know what's going to happen. All you can do is relish the moment," GW's top scorer last season said. "Whatever happens, give it my best shot. My goal is definitely to be [in the NBA]. Any team that's willing to have me. If that's not the case, then I'll go somewhere else."
The 6-foot-5 guard who battled injuries at Indiana before transferring to GW has been practicing locally at Washington Bible College. When needed, Creek also has a support group to call upon for advice. Specifically, another son of D.C. area basketball: Kevin Durant.
"Just be confident," Durant told Creek. "Be strong with the ball, do what you do best which is shoot the basketball."
Seeing as Durant has some pull with Oklahoma City, couldn't he have helped Creek get a workout with the Thunder?
After pausing to laugh at the joke/query, an all smiles Creek said in all seriousness, "I never asked cause I feel like it's time to get your own."