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Coach Cal tells us Nerlens was insured, just in case


Coach Cal has been very lucky, and blessed, when it comes to player injuries in his 22 year career as a head coach. But that injury-free run is part of what makes Nerlens’ ACL tear so devastating, he said this afternoon on Twitter.  It’s the first time he’s had to deal with an injury of this severity during the season. Calipari has sent almost 30 players to the NBA since he took his first head coaching job at UMass in 1988, and all of those players had healthy college careers under his watch.

This year, however, Nerlens Noel, Calipari’s star player and potential third No. 1 draft pick in four years, is out 6-8 months with a dreaded ACL injury. It’s unlikely Noel will suit up for Calipari and Kentucky again, and he’ll almost certainly slip from that top spot in the draft.

But Calipari is loving Noel’s attitude today, not even 24 hours after suffering the excruciating injury. Calipari said he met with Noel this morning and the meeting was very positive. He expects Noel to bounce back stronger than ever.

And for the record, Noel would’ve been okay financially had the injury been a career-ender. Calipari tweeted that Noel is insured for situations like this. Luckily, the injury won’t keep Noel from continuing his basketball career and he’ll be back out on the court by this time next season. Cal said athletes back bounce from ACL injuries all the time.

It’s good to know Nerlens is keeping his head high, not that we expected anything else, and ready to tackle the challenge that’s been put in front of him.

I bet he’ll be spending a lot of time on the phone with Derrick Rose, another one of Calipari’s favorites, who is nearing a comeback of his own from an ACL tear in his left knee last season. He should be Noel’s best friend over the next year.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

48 responses to “Coach Cal tells us Nerlens was insured, just in case”

  1. LexDoc

    Wishing Nerlens a speedy recovery!

  2. ukfastcat

    In this case, his youth will serve him well.
    I know we all expect him to be back to full speed as soon as possible.
    Nerlens, you are a Wildcat forever.
    Get better and get it done in The League.
    We will all be rooting for you!

  3. crazycatfan

    NOEL – LOVE YOUR SPIRIT!!! PRAYERS FOR A FULL RECOVERY AND MAJOR COMEBACK!!!

  4. motodog

    I could see a call from D.A coming his way.

  5. sharpiefan

    Does this mean Noel can hire an agent and get that shoe contract going? All the best for Noel and a good recovery!

  6. Han

    Forget Rose. Rose still isn’t back and doesn’t know how long it will take him. Noel needs to find out who worked on and with Adrian Peterson. Guy blew his knee, came back for the next season, and nearly broke the all-time rushing record. He doesn’t jump, but he sure as hell runs and turns. Whoever worked on him and helped him rehab are miracle workers.

    He also has Jon Hood on his own team to talk to about rehabbing, and maybe Beckham can help him some too, since he’s out after surgery.

    Wishing the best to Noel with his pain, his surgery, the recovery, and the heartbreak of having to sit when he wants to play.

    We’d all love if he came back to play more at UK, but it’s probably in his best interests to enter the draft. In the meantime, you know he’ll be cheering on his teammates, and as soon as he’s able, he’ll be back on the sideline cheering.

    Btw, what are the 3 worst teams in the NBA (yes, I know the lottery allows for a lot more), and do any of them owe their picks anywhere (or are they protected anyway)?

  7. Anthony

    Even in injury this young cat is in beast mode. I think he’s become my favorite UK player ever after this. Thanks for all the effort, hard work, and class that you represent the University of Kentucky with, Nerlens.

  8. GA Wildcat

    Hope Nerlens gets a shoe deal. How about the Nike Nerlens High Top Fade

  9. CATSTIME

    Man, Cal is fat….

  10. Catfan1

    Drew sure glad you have more sense than Mrs. Thompson. No way the NBA takes a chance.

  11. Han

    Just checked, and the worst teams right now are Charlotte (MKG), Orlando, Washington (Wall), Cleveland, Phoenix, New Orleans (Davis and Miller), Sacremento/Seattle (Boogie).

    Would be great if he goes to one of the teams with one of our guys. Can you imagine his defense alongside MKG? Or getting lobs from Wall in Washington? Patrolling the paint alongside Davis or Boogie, an unstoppable front court?

  12. Fat Cat

    Nerlens poops ice cream

  13. Computer Blue

    Glad Noel is insured. NCAA should insure them all instead of the player having to pay.

  14. Ridge Runner

    I bet Coach leaves the crowds, walks into his house, kisses Miss Cal on the cheek, looks thru the snack cabinet…quietly goes into the bathroom…unloosens his tie….stands in fron of the mirror….and yells…SONNNNOFFFFABBBBIAATTTCHHHHH!

  15. ThankfulCat

    #10

    You are an idiot

  16. UKnut

    Thank you Nerlens for giving everything you had. I hope the healing process will go well and remember that the BBN will always be there for you. Thank You and God Bless

  17. Reasedru

    Sounds like he’ll be fine and his draft stock shouldnt take much of a hit…It was a pleasure to watch him, and i wish him the best…Lets face it ,this team is awful and was going nowhere with or without Nerlens…

  18. TheLaw

    15 – Seconded

  19. Back to Football

    Big Ten officials recently agreed to stop scheduling nonconference football games against FCS programs. I think the SEC should follow this path as well.

  20. Ridge Runner

    19….No disrespect, but lets wait just a thread or two at least before football. One of our own basketballers is gone.

  21. Who would score

    #11, with MKG and Noel on the Charlotte team, who would score? lots of energy and defense, not much scoring.

  22. What a tool

    #10 what are you talking about? Lol. U do not reside in reality. NBA scouts have already commented that this won’t have a big effect on Noel’s draft stock. But u need only look at history. Kenyon Martin went #1 after a leg injury late in his last year at Cincy. Sam Bowie was drafted ahead of Jordan after major leg injury. Your opinion is garbage. Worst case for NN is he slips to #5 or so, meaning only that he gets to go to a better team and makes slightly less millions at the start of his career. Just stfu

  23. Caftan1

    #10&15 I never said he won’t be drafted just not in the top 5. I hope the best! But I still have sense unlike you 2:) P.S. I still have a horse with a limp for sale.

  24. Caftan1

    #22 GREG ODEN!!!!! That’s all I need to say!

  25. TheLaw

    24 – Thanks for helping us make our argument; Greg Oden is a perfect example of a player that left early, got paid, and then got injured. The point: HE GOT PAID.

    And again, I will refer to the experts’ opinions about draft projections…stick to cleaning up after your horses.

  26. Say that again

    20, absolutely

  27. Give it a break

    Give #19 a break. We all feel bad about Noel, but it is what it is. He’ll be ok, he will get his millions and it will be a happy ending. We’ve been on this all day. Let’s move to something else. Do we have to continue this on and on and on, like a CNN or FOX news story?

  28. brain

    9 -Shut your piehole you ass wipe.

  29. Big Blue Buster

    Here’s hoping for a fast and complete recovery.

    Nerlens you are a true warrior, It was a joy to watch you battle every time you took the floor. You are the epitome of what Kentucky Basketball is about. You will conquer this big man and be back stronger than ever.

    God Bless your recovery

  30. Catfan1

    #25 hope you know what you are talking bout but I just saw Tom Penn (the GM of the portland trailblazers) say it is a gamble. #BOOM

  31. wildcats1

    I sure hope that the First Noel doesn’t turn into a Silent Night for the BBN.

  32. CatfaninNky

    14–In a day where we all feel saddened, I have to admit ridge that your #14comment did make me smile. I needed that.

  33. Roland

    NBA rookie scales for 2013 draft:
    Pick Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 QO
    1 $4,286,900 $4,479,800 $4,672,700 26.10% 30.00%
    2 $3,835,600 $4,008,200 $4,180,800 26.20% 30.50%
    3 $3,444,400 $3,599,400 $3,754,400 26.40% 31.20%
    4 $3,105,500 $3,245,200 $3,385,000 26.50% 31.90%
    5 $2,812,200 $2,938,700 $3,065,300 26.70% 32.60%
    6 $2,554,200 $2,669,100 $2,784,100 26.80% 33.40%
    7 $2,331,700 $2,436,600 $2,541,600 27.00% 34.10%
    8 $2,136,100 $2,232,200 $2,328,300 27.20% 34.80%
    9 $1,963,600 $2,052,000 $2,140,300 27.40% 35.50%
    10 $1,865,300 $1,949,200 $2,033,200 27.50% 36.20%
    Read more at http://www.hoopsworld.com/2012-13-rookie-salary-scale/#XP8AdtsL45ahbic6.99

  34. Spenser

    Chad Ford wrote that he has spoken to a number of GMs and they would have no issue with taking Noel 2-5 assuming a normal recovery with no setbacks. KSR already showed a stat where players are likely to improve their hustle stats after ACL injuries, and Noel has youth on his side. Also, I’m no expert, but Oden’s injuries involved bones, microfractures, chipped knee caps, and chronic knee problems he probably had for years. Also, both of Oden’s knees are shot. I don’t think you can compare the two. This draft is also considerably weaker than the 2014 draft will be.

    Insider: http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/blog/_/name/nba_draft/id/8944230/nba-draft-injury-kentucky-nerlens-noel-ends-bid-no-1-pick-2013

  35. TheLaw

    30 – I don’t know. That’s why I base my opinion on the experts making the draft projections. Are they always right? Of course not. Are they more knowledgeable than you? Definitely. It’s not even a question. Also, “Boom” is used when you make a valid point or some impactful statement. In your case (were this actually twitter) I believe the correct hashtag would be: #Fail

    That’s all the responses you will get from me. You will now be included in an elite group of idiots, along with Bob_Sugar, UKFreshmen, and a few other great minds of our time that simply get ignored.

  36. Fire Cal Now

    17. You are exactly right. We were horrible with Noel and we will be even worse without him. I just hope we don’t use Noel’s injury as a crutch and talk about how good we were going to be this year. Fact is the team hasn’t improved at all and would have likely missed the NCAA’s anyway.

  37. Bobbum man

    11- I would love to see a Davis Noel duo

  38. Roland

    36# Your handle should be “sarcasm” if not that stuff is BS.

  39. Joeboo

    36 why are you on this website. If you watched UK basketball this team has improved in compared to earlier in the season. That statement has no merit from some one who obviously does not watch Uk basketball. Go CATS!

  40. BigBlueJohnny

    I live in Charlotte and, once again, the Bobcats are a train wreck, but they are definitely buidling for some future success (ala OK City Thunder). Even if Noel was healthy, if they were picking #1, the current talk on the local sports radio is they would not pick him because they need offensive production BIG TIME. Or maybe they trade the 1st pick for multiple picks or something like that. Especially with the MKG pick last year, they are apparently not interested in another UK one-and-doner with a limited offensive ceiling. Granted, he would potentially be a defensive stopper for them but they just some players to score more points, bottomline. Nerlens will surely be in the lottery but who knows where. Good luck with the surgery and rehab Nerlens, forever a Wildcat!

  41. Threshold

    Let me start by saying no one loves the CATS more than my family and myself. Watch them play, twitter pals with players, attend games when tickets are available. But lets get real for the rest of this season, look around you “We are on the threshold of HELL Ellen”. I mean we can’t be the best every season, or the other teams would quit playing. Love this team (as I do all the Kentucky teams). But we are done this season. Write it down!!! Thougts and prayers to #3 and the rest of the CATS!!! Do the best you can!!!

  42. Dave / New Mexico

    *A heartbreaking turn of events*

    My prayers are for Nerlens. He will always hold a special spot in the heart of every UK fan.

  43. brutaltruth

    #14 – after a long day at work, I come home to check KSR first thing. Your post was laugh out loud funny and is one of the main reasons I started reading KSR years ago. That is some funny stuff! Keep up the good work!

  44. Eric

    A clarification please, on this “insured” statement by Cal. Does anyone know for sure if he was referring to the parents having insured Nerlens with a policy to protect future earnings or medical insurance; or the University having insured him medically?

  45. Bobby Knight's Shrink

    Only thing to hold on to for rest of year is….KEEP THE 3 pt. shot STREAK ALIVE !!!

  46. Just saying

    If the referee had not been cheating and called the game fair this great player would not be injured. When he yanked a Florida player out the air and the coach went crazy he waived it off. Now had he made the call then Noel would have received his 3rd foul and Cal would have had him on the bench and this kid would be healthy today. Come on ref was the cheating worth costing a kid millions!

  47. Neil A.

    #30
    It’s Portland’s GM enough said.

  48. Neil A.

    #44
    I’m pretty sure the school can’t buy the insurance, even though it should be the least they could provide if the NCAA wasn’t so greedy.