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Tar Heel Nation Waits: Day 18

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All that is missing is that ominous music and a custom logo like CNN uses when they do special coverage.

This has really be insane.  I do not recall the month following the loss to Georgetown being this fevered last season but then again Wayne Ellington announced a return almost immediately and with Tyler Hansbrough and Ty Lawson doing so at the banquet.  That left Brandan Wright who was being projected in the top five and everyone assumed he was going pro anyway.

Now it has been a firestorm of rumors for a solid week.  That in and of itself is not unusual given the proliferation of message boards but the number of variations on the rumors strikes me as odd.   There is also the fact what we thought would happen almost three weeks ago may not happen at all and we will get something totally unexpected.

On the basis of the DraftExpress report, which I think has credibility, I am almost ready to swap the odds on Hansbrough and Lawson staying that I set over two weeks ago.  At that point I thought Hansbrough was a near lock and Lawson was most likely to leave.  Now that seems to have reversed and with good reason.  Hansbrough would probably like to at least gauge himself at the Orlando pre-draft camp either to get an idea of what he needs to work on(meaning a return) or to wow the scouts who think he is a late first rounder(meaning he is gone.)  It would appear Lawson has finally picked up on what most people have thought and that is this draft has too much depth, especially at PG.  Lawson is also not completely healthy and undoubtedly that would show up in the draft camps.

Wayne Ellington's status has been shrouded in mystery.  While we have heard comments from Lawson's mother and Hansbrough's father as well as rumors placing either one of them in or out of the draft, Ellington's situation remains clouded.  There has been some banter about Ellington leaving but mostly his status is seen as 50-50 with no one know anything.  Ellington is not even projected as a 1st round pick by what is publically known which is why no one can understand why he is considering the jump.  Family pressures have been discussed in part but I am not sure entering the draft without being a 1st round lock is going to help his family financially since a 2nd round selection is not guranteed money.

The wild card in all of this is the assertion from DraftExpress that Danny Green was thinking about testing the waters.  In some ways this was not a surprise, mainly because he was discussed some as a possibly NBA defector in the first few days.  That kind of talk dried up and everything from UNC indicated the coaching staff was gathering information for the Big Three only.  So what does it mean that Green's name has come up now?  It could mean that Green has gone solo in the process and has opted not to use the UNC coaches as a resource.  Speculation on the message boards has included talk of a sleazy agent making promises to his family however I think it may have to do with a small rift between the UNC staff and Green's father.  According to an ESPN.com article, Green's father once sent letters to the UNC coaches concerning playing time.  This was followed by Roy commenting that Green's ill advised three pointer which set off the collapse in the regional final was one of the worst shots he had ever seen.  These two events at the very least cast some doubts on Green's willingness to stay.  Obviously we are dealing in speculation here but I have no reason to doubt the DE report, especially if Green is operating his draft process independent of UNC.  At the same time, it is one line in a single report so we will wait and see how it works out.  It may turn out Green is nowhere near testing the waters and the information is just plain wrong but I do think there are indications it might be true.

So we wait, hoping the next time we refresh our browser we will see good news.