I almost went a number of different directions with tonight’s News and Views post. I thought about giving a shout out to World War II code breaker Alan Turing for his 100th birthday, Michael Phelps for the upcoming US Swimming Trials or Patrick McGuinnis for writing the book that I currently am reading (and think is excellent) The Last Hundred Days. But then I spent some of Sunday afternoon listening to Marc Maron’s podcast with Norm MacDonald and I had to go with him. Marc Maron hosts a bi-weekly podcast on comedy in which he interviews a number of comedians of all shapes and levels of fame, and has an hour long conversation about their lives. Each episode is dramatically different and can take a life of its own depending on the mood of Maron the day he does the interview. Sometimes they are hilarious recaps of a career and a view of comedy and sometimes they are depressing ruminations of their view on the miserable nature of life. Maron himself can sometimes be funny and sometimes quite difficult to like, but he is always a great interviewer and he seems to bring out the best in his subjects. I began by simply listening to the various comedians that I already enjoyed, but over time, I have listened to Maron talk to people who before I knew nothing about. Even the least interesting episodes give me something worthwhile and they have become a staple of my drives too and fro Lexington. Plus, in the Norm MacDonald episode, Maron references a day he was on our friend Terry Meiners’ show in Louisville. It is definitely worth checking out if you are the type who enjoys such things and the podcasts are available on iTunes or via his blog here. To the news:
— It is NBA Draft Week for the Six National Championship Cats as they get ready to find out their professional futures on Thursday night. The stock of nearly all the players (absent one) has changed and so it is worth a little summary review if you don’t follow the day-to-day projections:
Anthony Davis: Still going #1. The only argument is where he ranks among the #1 picks in history. Chad Ford of ESPN wrote last week that he was the sixth most solid #1 pick going into the Draft of the past 20 years, behind Lebron, Tim Duncan,Chris Webber, Greg Oden and Yao Ming. Considering how highly those players were thought of on draft day, that is elite company.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist: MKG’s slot on Draft night is still in flux as teams try and figure out whether to take the solid player or role the dice on one of the other guys with potentially more upside. It is unlikely MKG goes #2 to the Bobcats, which means Gilchrist is right now fluctuating between the Wizards, Cavs and Kings. A couple of folks plugged into the NBA scene have told me this weekend that the Kings may be the best bet at #5, which would place MKG with Demarcus Cousins on a team that could have/should have been in Louisville. If the rumored Bobcats-Cavs swap takes place, this is the likely scenario.
Terrence Jones: There may be no player in the Draft whose position has a greater feast/famine situation than that of Jones at this point. Some believe with a passion that Jones will go to Golden State at #7, a position that would be as high as he has ever been projected. But then there are those that believe if he slides past Golden State, he might not get picked until #16 with Portland. That slot is outside the lottery and at a much lower salary slot. Jones has been impressive in workouts and has shown teams a great deal during these past few weeks. But he is likely going to be a victim of forces that are outside his control, mainly how the players slot above him. No one probably goes into Thursday night with more potential variation on his future than the real T Jones as he gets ready to teach them bout Kentucky.
Marquis Teague: Teague is one of three PGs in the Draft who could potentially be a NBA starter, but to most NBA GMs, he is #3 of the group. He will undoubtedly go in the first round, but where is not clear. Most of the talk has been that Orlando really likes him in the early 20s. But for Teague, like all PGs, a lot depends on the situation of the team selecting. Most of the teams late in the first round are set at the PG position, but undoubtedly one of them will jump on his talent.
Doron Lamb: Very few players in the Draft have had a worse few weeks of workouts than Doron Lamb. His stock has dropped from potentially going in the early 20s, to possible mid-second round. He still may sneak into the first round, but his workouts have apparently not gone well and his deft shooting touch was not showcased. It only takes one to pick you, but the thought is that Lamb is likely now an early 2nd round pick.
Darius Miller: Not surprisingly, a player that has helped his stock immensely during the workouts is Darius Miller. Miller has consistently impressed and many believe that he could sneak into the end of the first round. The Miami Heat like Darius a great deal, and he would fit in with what they do. He could end up anywhere from one of the last couple of picks of the first round to the mid-second round.
— As far as players for next year, all the talk continues to be around Willie Cauley-Stein. Not only did Calipari tell everyone that would listen last week that Cauley-Stein can play, but I spoke to someone around the workouts this weekend who told me that he honestly could start. “Calipari loves the Twin Tower idea and while I don’t think in the end he will start, it is certainly something he will consider.” The thing that has shocked everyone is his athleticism and ability to get down the court. Although maybe the fact that he was an all-state Wide Receiver should have clued us in on that last year. Good to hear that we should star referring to this as at least a 7 man team.
— Joker Phillips got two more commitments this weekend, as he continues to try and catch up from a somewhat slow start in comparison to other SEC teams. All of Joker’s position player commitments have been three stars, a continued improvement from years in the past. I hope that folks who take the view (and there are many) of “we will never win without a majority of our players being four stars” will at some point accept that this will never happen at Kentucky…ever. Then maybe there can be some happiness about the state of UK football recruiting…which is admittedly behind most in the SEC, but ahead of where it has ever been before. Now whether that translates onto the field in the Joker Phillips era is a question that will be answered more later this year.
— Finally, the 1996 team reunion this weekend went well and Derek Anderson launched his victory water. Before the party, he ran into a bride and her bridesmaid and made their day. Derek was great on our show on Thursday and we wish him nothing but success in his venture.
It is NBA Draft week around these parts and we will be here to give you whatever is going on as it goes on. We start on radio tomorrow morning at 10 am. Legal CLEs (gotta keep that license current) and a Las Vegas Sports Blogger Conference with Drew and Hubby means we will have some fill-ins on radio:
Mon: Regular KSR crew
Tues: Dave Baker and Jennifer Palumbo
Wed: Matt Jones and Drew Franklin
Thur: Mary Jo Perino
Friday: Alex “Bad Moon” Risen and Dan Reiffer.
Show everyone your love. More later….