The past three seasons of Kentucky Basketball have certainly been a whirlwind of just about everything a college program can experience. From the lowest of lows that the Billy Gillispie era brought about to the enormous heights that current coach John Calipari has restored the program to, it’s safe to say that we’ve been through quite a bit in recent years. One of the many things that the enormous heights have brought about are countless stars that have been making their way through Lexington to play college ball. So far in Coach Cal’s tenure he has sent 15 players to the Association with many more certain to follow. Since those individuals were only here for a brief period of time and given the sheer volume of players being produced it’s difficult for any one fan to keep up with them at all times. So in order to give an update on how some of Calipari’s and previous administrations’ Wildcats are doing, I researched just how they were performing on their various teams throughout the NBA preseason.
Keep in mind that it is the preseason so numbers really aren’t reflective of what they’ll be in the regular season, but some players are still producing just about what is expected of them, in particular Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins. Both players are currently showing why they were deserving of the high draft selections they earned in their respective years. Other players like Enes Kanter and Eric Bledsoe are looking to show why they are poised for breakout seasons, as they’re averaging 12 and 11.7 points per game respectively. Some like Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marquis Teague are discovering right out of the gate that the league is a bit more difficult than college, but it’s clear they have the potential to be standouts at the next level in due time.
The NBA Preseason, like all other professional preseasons, is a time for young players to grow and for veterans to get back in the swing of things so it’s not surprising to see established players like Keith Bogans and Tayshaun Prince to put up low numbers early (age aside). Likewise it’s not shocking to see Michael Kidd-Gilchrist struggle early given the vast amounts of incompetency he will be forced to play with early on in his career. But, the most staggering thing about compiling this list was it’s sheer size. It’s still difficult to believe, even now, the tremendous number of players that Kentucky currently has playing ball in the NBA. Given the way Calipari has things rolling right now, is it out of the realm of possibility that perhaps 40 players from Kentucky could populate the league at one time? The past says that’s an absurd argument to make, but the present and future may eventually say otherwise.