This photo came right in the middle of his pre-game Chicken Dance.
And that something is nothing less than a returning First Team All-American
, according to CBSSports.com
Like most good players, Canaan's decision followed the lead of his head coach, Steve Prohm. Prohm decided to skip the "greener" pastures of Mississippi State (I don't blame him), and Canaan did likewise with the NBA. It's not often that you see a player clearly state that his decision was based entirely on his coach's, but that's exactly the case here. According to Canaan:
If he left, I was gone. But he decided to stick it out, and so I felt comfortable doing the same.
Sounds like they get along pretty well. And the decision is a big one for Canaan. Isaiah likely (or at least possibly) would have gone in the first round of this year's "weak" point guard draft, so returning to the Racers is a pretty big deal. Now, one of the nation's best regular season teams (28-1) looks to maintain their momentum in a more wide-open 2012-13 season.
Canaan said his decision to return should help him to improve as a player and role model before he graduates next year and heads, hopefully, to an NBA career:
Everything has changed significantly. I've grown as a person, and with the season we had I've gone from being a regular player to a player a lot of people look up to now, and it's an honor because you always dream about things like this. So I've just been trying to push myself to be the player people see in me.
I know I've got a big load to carry. It's a challenge. But I like challenges.
I started to go ahead and chase the dream, but something told me to just wait it out. Steve Prohm has done so much for me. So I just told him that I'll stick it out with him one more year, finish school and hopefully better myself as a basketball player.
Murray State loses seniors Donte Poole, Jewuan Long, and Ivan Aska, who each averaged over 25 minutes per game. So dominating conference play could still be a tall order. That said, if Canaan performs up to expectations, and the incoming five man recruiting class isn't a complete bust, well then look out. The Racers could be looking at nabbing a coveted top-4 seed in next year's tournament.
But for now, be assured that the commonwealth of Kentucky is once again prepared to be the center of talent for the college basketball world.
Everything is as it should be.