An ex North Carolina Tar Heel is heading to the NBA D-League.
According to Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports, P.J. Hairston has officially filed his paper work in anticipation of joining the minor league of The Association.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Ex-North Carolina swingman P. J. Hairston has filed paperwork to join the D-League.</p>— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) <a href="https://twitter.com/SpearsNBAYahoo/statuses/421772198550851584">January 10, 2014</a></blockquote>
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This move was, nevertheless, an anticipated one. Our own Dakota Schmidt spoke with Springfield Armor big man Willie Reed about Hairston's potential move to the D-League just a couple weeks ago. Having overcome similar obstacles while on his own respective path to the NBA (Reed spent time with the Grizzlies last season), the 23 year old had this to say:
RU: As you may know, P.J. Hairston was recently removed from North Carolina's program. As a player who faced a similar situation, describe the challenges that you encountered.
Reed: The biggest challenge was just sitting down and figuring out what was next. For me, it was the professional basketball aspect after trying to get back into school and doing the college thing. If that didn't work out for P.J. then the next step for him will probably be in professional ball, whether that means going overseas, or using the D-League for a year of professional basketball experience---like what Glen Rice Jr. did. I think the biggest key for him is figuring out how to rebuild his image.
RU: For a player like Hairston or yourself, how is the D-League in terms of a tool to help you mature, not only as a player, but as an overall person?
Reed: It helps you grow, because you're no longer in the college atmosphere, where you have help from everybody (I.e teachers, coaches, trainers, academic advisors). The biggest thing about being a professional is that this is your job, so how you continuously get better everyday and how you use the coaching staff is completely up to you. Being on your own and making your own decisions is huge for you to figure out how much you really want it.