For the first time in a decade, Kentucky did not have a top-14 pick in the NBA Draft, but it looks like they’ll restart the trend in 2021.
According to CBS Sports’ “way-too-early” 2021 NBA Mock Draft, two Kentucky Wildcats made the cut for the lottery: freshmen B.J. Boston and Terrence Clarke. CBS Sports contributor Gary Parrish has Boston going No. 5 overall to the New York Knicks and Clarke landing with the Orlando Magic at No. 8.
My first projected lottery of the 2021 NBA Draft.
1. Cade Cunningham
2. Evan Mobley
3. Jalen Greenhttps://t.co/qtjjajbcjA
— Gary Parrish (@GaryParrishCBS) November 19, 2020
During the 2020 NBA Draft from this past Wednesday, Kentucky did not have a player drafted in the lottery for the first time since John Calipari took over as head coach back in 2009. Former Wildcat one-and-done guard Tyrese Maxey was selected with the No. 21 overall pick and will suit up for the Philadelphia 76ers for his rookie debut.
The 2021 Draft figures to be littered with elite-level talent, something the most recent draft could not say. Having Boston and Clarke near the top is no small feat despite the regular season still being several days away. Here’s what Parrish had to say about the two future ‘Cats hoping to lead this Kentucky program to a Final Four.
5. Knicks: BJ Boston (Kentucky)
BJ Boston should be the best freshman player and prospect in the SEC. He’s a 6-5 wing who excels in transition but can also get to the rim in halfcourt sets and finish in a variety of ways.
8. Magic: Terrence Clarke (Kentucky)
After having zero players selected in the lottery for the first time in 11 years at Kentucky, John Calipari should have at least two players among the first 14 picks next year. Terrence Clarke is a guard with size who, like teammate BJ Boston, is terrific in transition.
Boston and Clarke are expected by many Kentucky fans to lead the team in scoring alongside Wake Forest transfer Olivier Sarr.
Parrish’s way-too-early predictions feature plenty of familiar names too, and a few that nearly came to Lexington. Cade Cunningham, Jalen Green, Jonathan Kuminga, Scottie Barnes, and Jalen Suggs were all Kentucky targets at one point during their recruitment before going elsewhere and are all players that Parish has among his top-10 pro prospects.