No one has coached Tyrese Maxey longer than Houston Hoops assistant Josh Woodson. He spoke with Kentucky Sports Radio about the type of player the Cats are getting in Maxey and when they will be getting him.
On your reaction when he committed to UK
Josh Woodson: I was ecstatic for him. It was a great decision for him to make. For him to follow his dreams and chase his dreams there isn’t a better place to do it than Kentucky and play for Coach Cal.
On why now was the right time
Josh Woodson: Now was the right time because we’re coming out of the first live period of his junior year and Kentucky has been recruiting him as well as any other school, but there was something special about this relationship. Coach Cal and Coach Payne and those guys were able to build something special with him.
On how well UK’s style of play fits his game
Josh Woodson: Oh, man. Tyrese is a guy that’s going to go out there and create. One thing about Coach Cal is that he’s the man when it comes to the Memphis dribble-drive, open space offenses and allowing players to get after it. Tyrese is a guy that all you have to do is give him the ball on the court and a little direction and he will go get it. Ultimately this is the place he needs to be because what place is better to go than Kentucky?
On Maxey being known as a scorer but being able to do other things
Josh Woodson: Whatever his points per game he finishes with at whatever level you need to throw seven or eight rebounds with it. He’s a big rebounding guard as well. I’ve seen him out there snatching rebounds from bigs, 6-foot-10 guys before. He’s one of the tallest guys on his high school team and he plays wherever he needs him. He’s a rebounder, but he’s a defender, too.
But when the game is tight and it comes down to the wire no coach in America would rather have anybody other than Tyrese Maxey with the ball in his hands.
On Maxey’s thought process with reclassifying and why he says he will stay in 2019
Josh Woodson: When you’re the No. 1 player in the state of Texas and you’re a top 10 player in the country and a top three point guard in America, everyone is coming at him. Left, right, front, back, the side. He doesn’t know what’s coming at him. When you’re in that position you listen to what you need to listen to but you always need to do what’s best by you and staying (2019) seems to be what’s best for him.
On if that could change later this summer
Josh Woodson: Right now Tyrese spoke today and he said he’s 2019 and that’s what he’s doing. He picked Kentucky and he says he’s staying 2019 so that’s what will go with.
On what’s next for Maxey after being invited to tryout for the USA U18 team coached by Bill Self
Josh Woodson: He obviously was invited tryouts in Colorado Springs and we want him to go there and do as well as he can and go as far as he can. For him to be able to do that and experience representing your country that’s every kid’s dream whether at the amateur or professional level. That’s the focus for him after the next to EYBL sessions.
I know Tyrese pretty well and he’s not overly worried about that, he’s worried about how we will do in Atlanta for the next EYBL session. That’s the type of player he is.