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Quinn Slazinski Had St. John’s Game ‘Circled on Calendar’ For Long Time



WVU Basketball Quinn Slazinski
Kelsie LeRose / WVSN

WVU F Quinn Slazinski spoke to the media prior to Friday’s matchup with St. John’s. This is a meaningful game to Slazinski, who was originally committed to SJU during the summer before transferring over to West Virginia in July.

“This is a game that I’ve circled for a long time on my calendar. Excited to see some old friends, old teammates. I’m looking at this as no other game. Obviously, I’m probably going to be a little more amped up and that’s just natural. The main objective is to win. I’m not here to play 1-on-1 versus Rick Pitino. I’m here to beat St. John’s,” Slazinski said.

Slazinski has played at West Virginia for just six games and is already known as a passionate player by the fanbase. Slazinski has been a huge help to interim HC Josh Eilert and his staff as WVU was short-handed heading into the season. Slazinski is averaging 16.5 points and 4.5 rebounds as the Mountaineers sit at .500.

“I’ve worked my butt off my whole life,” Slazinski said. “For me to be able to find a home here my fifth year where I can play comfortably and play my game, it’s truly a blessing from God.”

Slazinski has had a journey in college basketball, playing at Louisville and Iona, while also committing to St. John’s this past offseason. Slazinski’s coach at Iona, Rick Pitino, got a job back in the Big East and Slazinski followed him. Pitino and his staff cleaned house at SJU as they added many transfer portal pieces. In July, Harvard transfer Chris Ledlum became available after de-committing from Tennessee. Ledlum then committed to St. John’s, leaving Slazinski in a tough spot as the two play the same position.

“Looking at their roster, having 14 guys that played over 20 minutes a game, it wasn’t a thing where it was like hey we could use Quinn. Pitino was well aware of my goals and what I wanted in my career. This was a thing where they got a 15th player late, who played in my position,” Slazinski said.

Rumors began swirling that Pitino and St. John’s pushed Slazinski out of the program and into the portal.

“It’s completely wrong what people think about it. It was my decision to be able to come here,” Slazinski added.

Slazinski then re-entered the transfer portal and committed to West Virginia, who was in need of players after Bob Huggins resigned. Now as the leading scorer of the team, Slazinski is ready to host his once-committed school and play against old coaches and teammates.

“Best of luck, good luck to St. John’s the rest of the year but then again there’s some fire there,” he said.

West Virginia will host St. John’s in the Big East-Big 12 Battle on Friday. This marks the first time since 2012 that Pitino will coach in Morgantown. The Mountaineers and Red Storm will tipoff at 7 p.m. on ESPN2.

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