Not even the most die-hard Kentucky fan — say, Ashley Judd — really thought Anthony Davis or the rest of the top players on Kentucky were coming back for another year.
That will become reality Tuesday when Davis (the lock No. 1 overall pick and likely franchise player) as well as Terrence Jones, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Doran Lamb and Marquis Teague of Kentucky all will hold a joint press conference, at which each and each one is expected to declare for the NBA draft, as reported on NBC’s CollegeBasketballTalk.
Yes, Kidd-Gilchrist has repeatedly denied he was turning pro, but it would be a shock if the lock top five pick did not jump into the draft.
There’s a reason that these guys are all turning pro (and a reason Kentucky won the national title). DraftExpress in their current mock draft has Davis going No. 1, Kidd-Gilchrist No. 3, Jones No. 11, Teague No. 18 and Lamb early in the second round.
None of this is a surprise, this is how the John Calipari system works (see John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Bledsoe, Brandon Knight, and we could go on and on). But this group is fully committed if they declare — the new (and silly) NCAA rule says that the last day to withdraw your name from consideration for the draft was April 10. The NBA says players have to April 29 to declare, but now once you are in you are in, there is no time to “test the waters.” (How is this the NCAA is looking after the student athletes? Oh, we’ll save that rant for another day.)
NEW YORK (AP) New York Knicks rookie R.J. Barrett will miss at least a week with a sprained right ankle.
Barrett was hurt during the Knicks’ loss to Phoenix on Thursday. On Friday, he had X-rays, which were negative.
The Knicks announced afterward that Barrett will be re-evaluated in a week.
The No. 3 pick in the draft from Duke is averaging 14.1 points.
MIAMI (AP) — The Miami Heat say Justise Winslow will miss at least two more weeks while recovering from a back injury.
Winslow has played only once since Dec. 4 and is slated to be out for at least the remainder of January. The team originally called Winslow’s injury a back strain, then updated the diagnosis to a bone bruise.
Winslow played off the bench in Miami’s win at Indiana on Jan. 8. The team said the back problems reappeared after that game. He has not played since.
Friday’s game in Oklahoma City is Miami’s 41st of the season and the 30th that Winslow has missed. He’s averaging 11.3 points, 6.6 rebounds and 4.0 assists for the Heat this season.
The Hawks beat the Spurs in San Antonio on Feb. 15, 1997.
The next year, Kevin Huerter was born.
Atlanta’s next win in San Antonio came Friday, when Huerter hit the game-winning 3-pointer in a 121-120 win.
The Hawks’ losing streak in San Antonio spanned Tim Duncan’s entire lengthy career – and continued a few seasons beyond that. The only reprieve came during the lockout-shortened 1999 season, when Atlanta didn’t visit San Antonio. So, the skid lasted 21 games.
Buddy Hield is quite familiar with frustration amid the Kings’ disappointing season.
Sacramento fans showed theirs Wednesday, booing the Kings during their home loss to the Mavericks.
Buddy Hield, via James Ham of NBC Sports California:
“Everybody is frustrated, it’s not even them, we’re trying to figure it out too,” Buddy Hield said following the loss. “But it’s the home team and we get booed…we don’t agree with it, but they’re going to voice their opinion.
“I understand their frustration, but like I said, I’m going to keep shooting the ball,” Hield continued. “When I make a three they like me, when I don’t, they hate you. That’s how Sacramento fans are, man, so you’ve got to embrace it.”
Hield seemingly isn’t looking to pick a fight with fans. He made a point to empathize with their frustration.
But I don’t think he’s being fair, either.
Kings fans are far more loyal than swinging between love and hate depending whether or not a shot falls. They’re fed up after 13 – going on 14 – straight seasons missing the playoffs. This year has been particularly discouraging, as Sacramento has backtracked from fun and fast to sad and slow. Losing to Luka Doncic – a particular grievance – only adds to the irritation.
The Kings’ problems have spanned multiple owners, executives, coaches and players. So, booing this group isn’t totally fair, either. But this is who’s in front of the fans.
If this Sacramento team plays hard and together, fans will embrace it – and stick with it through thinner times.