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Cats in the NBA
Former Kentucky Players in the NBA
Marquis Teague is headed to the D-League. The Chicago Bulls announced today that they’ve assigned Teague to the Iowa Energy after nine games. So far this season, Teague is averaging 1.2 points per game, 0.8 assists per game in 8.9 minutes per game.
Teague will be the third former Cat playing in the D-League, along with Ramon Harris (Fort Wayne Mad Ants) and DeAndre Liggins (Sioux Falls Skyforce).
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©11:00 am
While in Memphis to play the Grizzlies, the Phoenix Suns stopped by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to visit with the patients and spread some holiday cheer. Eric Bledsoe and Archie Goodwin ran into a UK fan and posed for a picture, which they later put up on Instagram.
Eric said he “had a great time at St. Jude’s hospital with the kids and my teammates!! Always good to put a smile on someones face,” while Archie posted he also “had a great time at St. Jude’s hospital. Truly a blessing to experience this. UK fans Are EVERYWHERE!”
Small world, Big Blue Nation.
Bad news for one of Kentucky’s favorite former Cats: Anthony Davis fractured his left hand in the first quarter of the Pelicans/Knicks game tonight. It’s a non-displaced fracture, which means that the bones are still aligned, but there is still no word on how long he’ll be out.
Coming into tonight, Davis led the NBA with 3.9 blocks per game. He also averaged 19.6 points and 10.6 rebounds per game for the Pelicans (7-8).
Get well soon, Anthony.
We all know that UK’s former players in the NBA have been killing it lately. Anthony Davis, John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Terrence Jones, and Eric Bledsoe are just a few of UK’s hottest NBA Cats, with career-highs going up almost every week. Statcenter has an interesting chart this afternoon that illustrates the most efficient high-usage players in the league, and one name near the top might surprise you: Eric Bledsoe.
According to their research, Bledsoe has a true shooting percentage of 61%, with a usage rate (“an estimate of the percentage of team plays used by a player while he was on the floor”) of 26.4%. What does that mean? Although Bledsoe doesn’t get as many touches as some of the other players, he’s making the most of them, with the third highest true shooting percentage, behind LeBron James and Kevin Durant.
DeMarcus Cousins also made the chart, unfortunately, on the wrong end. DeMarcus has a true shooting percentage of 51% while getting 34.9% of his team’s plays, the highest of the players in the study. As promised, the Kings are getting him the ball more (his usage rate is up from 28% last year), but the stats suggest he can do even more with it.
H/t to Deadspin
Last week, DeMarcus Cousins’ new webisode series #RealDMC began, with DeMarcus sharing some hilarious dance moves and footage from a paintball match with his friends.
Episode two dropped yesterday, and viewers get to see DeMarcus go to a Drake concert with Ben McLemore. Boogie talks about his friendship with Drake, whom he met, you guessed it, via John Calipari:
“Me and Drake been cool for a long time. It’s not just something that happened when I came to the NBA. We actually got cool when I was a freshman at UK. I’m a big fan of his and vice versa.”
If you like Drake and seeing DeMarcus Cousins bop his head to music, you’ll really enjoy it.
The Washington Wizards may currently be three games below .500, but that hasn’t stopped John Wall from going on a hot streak. His scoring average of 34 points in the past two contests is an impressive feat by itself, but the former #1 overall pick in 2010′s NBA Draft is also averaging 5 rebounds and 4.5 assists in that same span. The above video show’s Wall’s 31-point performance against the New York Knicks from last night.
After a long and painstaking wait, basketball has finally returned to the Commonwealth. Following a down season which witnessed the Cats going to the NIT, John Calipari reloaded his team with a recruiting class for the ages. Most would agree after a few weeks that the individual talent hasn’t come together to form a cohesive unit just yet, but if most of the games are any indication, this team has the potential to cut down the nets in Dallas come April. Such a project isn’t a new undertaking for Coach Calipari either, as you’re well aware, he’s had the responsibility of making those immensely talented individuals come together and play team ball for some time now, and he’s done it rather successfully. In addition to the large number of wins that he’s accumulated during his UK tenure, he has also sent quite a few players to play professional ball, 17 to be exact. Those previously mentioned 17 have taken their talents to the professional ranks to join the other six Wildcats who previously left to play in the worlds premier basketball association. Given that you’re a busy person, you probably don’t have time to follow all of the former Cats, but fret not, we here at KSR do have the time. Below you’ll find the statistics for the Cats who have moved on to play professional ball.
-Anthony Davis is pretty good at this basketball thing, eh? Through the Pelicans’ 11 games, Davis is averaging 21 points, 10.8 rebounds, and 4.1 blocks per game. After considering these numbers and combining them with his other stats, you’ll understand why the former Cat is leading the NBA in Player Efficiency Rating. While leading LeBron James in an overall efficiency metric is unbelievably impressive, perhaps his most impressive feat so far on the season was swatting a combined 17 shots in his past two contests against the Jazz and 76ers.
-Not to be outdone by Davis, DeMarcus Cousins is having a standout season in Sacramento thus far. The former 5th overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft is leading all of the former Cats in scoring, averaging 21.5 on the season. In addition to his 20+ points per game, Cousins is pulling down nearly ten rebounds and forcing nearly two steals per game.
-Following the trade to Phoenix, Eric Bledsoe has shown that he’s more than capable of leading a team. After nine games played, Bledsoe is Phoenix’s leading scorer at 20.4 points per contest. Not only is he scoring at will, but he’s also doing it efficiently, connecting on 50% of field goal attempts. In addition to points scored, he’s currently averaging 6.8 assists, 4.6 rebounds, and 1.8 steals per game.
-Perhaps the biggest surprise of the season is the explosion of Enes Kanter. The Turkish big man is currently pouring in 15 points per game in addition to his 7.5 rebounds. It took a while for Kanter to get his NBA career going, but now he’s currently doubling his career scoring average. The Jazz may suck this year, but look at the bright side, there’s a very real possibility that Kanter could team up with Julius Randle next season.
Rajon Rondo is still recovering from ACL surgery, but that didn’t stop him from giving some serious stink eye to the Celtics’ stat sheet last night on the bench after the first quarter.
Maybe it’s because Boston was only shooting 24.1% after the first quarter? Or maybe someone had scrawled an insult about his favorite jacket:
It’s that time again to check in on our NBA Cats. Five former Cats had big games last night. Here are their stats:
John Wall (vs. Minnesota): 14 points, 5 rebounds, 16 assists, 2 steals, and 1 block in 39 minutes (Career high in assists)
DeMarcus Cousins (vs. Phoenix): 27 points, 12 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 steals, and 2 blocks in 35 minutes
Patrick Patterson (vs. Phoenix): 10 points, 5 rebounds, and 1 assist in 25 minutes (Season high in points)
Archie Goodwin (vs. Sacramento): 16 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals in 19 minutes (Career high in points)
Terrence Jones (vs. Boston): 24 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 blocks in 27 minutes (Career high in points)
(Eric Bledsoe did not play for the Suns last night because of a shin injury.)
Cal was so proud of his boys that he took to Twitter this morning to humblebrag:
“Another strong night for our guys in the NBA. Terrence got another start and scored a career-high 24 points in his team’s victory. John Wall tied his career high with 16 assists. DeMarcus Cousins’ 27-12 night is becoming normal. Archie had 16 points in 19 minutes. We’ve got so many guys in the league right now that I can’t mention every single one, but all of our players are playing really well. Seems like every night one of them is having a big game. Won’t be surprised if a few more do well tonight. Keep it up, guys.”
Keep making us proud, boys.
The Blank Ink Crew welcomed Boogie into their New York City tattoo parlor early in the summer for a taping of their VH1 reality show, which is about tattoos, I assume. The show aired last night with DeMarcus getting a new tattoo, a portrait of his mother on his forearm.
Meanwhile, during the episode’s premiere, DeMarcus was out in Sacramento hanging out at this friend Drake’s concert. The UK-loving rapper gave Boogie a shout-out during the show and asked the crowd to vote for him on the NBA All-Star ballot.
Tonight DeMarcus faces Eric Bledsoe, Archie Goodwin, and the Phoenix Suns. It should be a big game for him because Phoenix has no one to contain him.