Davante Gardner, who was the 55th best Value Add player in the country his junior season and still in the top 4% of all players his senior season, has signed a pro contract in France.
Gardner's sophomore year was the 32nd best of any Marquette player. Only four Marquette players matched three years at that level - Travis Diener, Lazar Hayward, Dominic James (now Dominic Wright) and Wesley Matthews.
Dwyane Wade's 2003 was the best of any player, when he had the 7th best season in the 12-year history of the Value Add database. Travis Diener had three of Marquette's top 10 seasons, and Jimmy Butler had two of Marquette's top 10 seasons.
I first saw Davante Gardner when I flew to Marquette for the Notre Dame game which he took as his visit from my native Virginia, and loved his play for all four years - believing he became easily Marquette's best player. We wish him and Jamil Wilson, who is fighting to become Marquette's 37th NBA player, the best of luck.
Below are the players with the top 50 Value Add seasons for Marquette, with notes on their pro careers after Marquette. Dwight Buycks' best season was actually the 56th best, but we include him as an honorable mention since he played in the NBA last year.
|Top 50 MU Seasons||Player||Value Add||Year||Pro career after Marquette?|
|19||Acker, Maurice||5.08||2010||France is 6th pro country|
|39||Barro, Ousmane||2.95||2008||Romania is 6th pro country|
|26||Blue, Vander||4.02||2013||3 NBA Games with Celtics|
|5||Butler, Jimmy||7.79||2010||87 NBA Starts with Bulls|
|HM (56)||Buycks, Dwight||1.73||2011||14 NBA games with raptors|
|37||Cadougan, Junior||3.36||2013||Canadian National Team|
|2||Crowder, Jae||11.12||2012||24 NBA starts, 156 games for Mavs|
|36||Cubillan, David||3.44||2007||Brief Israel contracts|
|3||Diener, Travis||9.31||2004||21 NBA Starts with Pacers, 179 games|
|43||Fitzgerald, Dan||2.76||2007||Spanish team is 8th pro team|
|11||Gardner, Davante||6.13||2013||France - just signed|
|8||Hayward, Lazar||6.49||2010||72 NBA games with Wolves and Thunder|
|21||Jackson, Robert||4.77||2003||None known|
|13||James, Dominic||5.69||2006||French career ended in 2013, name now Dominic Wright|
|18||Johnson-Odom, Darius||5.26||2012||7 NBA games for Lakers, 76ers|
|50||Lockett, Trent||2.36||2013||Top German League, D-League Select|
|10||Matthews, Wesley||6.19||2009||321 NBA starts Jazz and Blazers, 14.0 ppg|
|14||McNeal, Jerel||5.66||2009||Spanish team is 7th pro team|
|6||Novak, Steve||7.46||2006||414 NBA games, 2085 points|
|1||Wade, Dwyane||11.4||2003||710 NBA Starts, 24.3 ppg, 6.0 ast, 5.0 reb, 1.8 stl, 1.0 blk|
|25||Wilson, Jamil||4.2||2013||signs with Suns, trying to make team|