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Former Tennessee Guard Staying In NBA Draft

Justin Powell Tennessee
Tennessee guard Justin Powell. Photo via Tennessee Athletics.

Former Tennessee shooting guard Justin Powell is staying in the NBA Draft and not returning to Washington State for his senior season, ESPN’s Jonathan Givony reported Wednesday afternoon.

Powell is pursuing professional basketball after turning in a strong junior season for the Cougars where he averaged 10.4 points per game on 43% shooting from three-point range. The Kentucky native spent his final college season at Washington State after a turbulent collegiate journey.

Powell went to Auburn out of high school where he impressed early in his freshman season before a concussion led to him missing the entirety of SEC play. The 6-foot-6 shooting guard entered the transfer portal after his freshman season and eventually landed at Tennessee.

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The Prospect, Kentucky native was largely a disappointment in his lone season at Knoxville. Powell impressed early in his sophomore season, scoring in double-digits four times in non conference play. But Powell struggled to find his groove in SEC play and ended the season averaging 3.7 points in just 14 minutes per game.

Powell’s defense was his biggest issue in his year at Tennessee but the shooting guard also struggled to find his shooting stroke as his playing time decreased.

The shooting guard spent his three-year college career at three different schools and has’t played at the same school for consecutive seasons since his freshman and sophomore years of high school.

Powell projects to go undrafted in the 2023 NBA Draft but the shooting guard going late in the second round isn’t out of the realm of possibility.

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