It’s official: EJ Montgomery has declared for the NBA Draft.
Montgomery just shared the news on Instagram, thanking his coaches, teammates, and fans for their support. A press release from UK confirms he is foregoing his eligibility, ending his time as a Wildcat.
“What an incredible honor it has been to play for not only one of the best schools in the country, but also the best fans,” Montgomery said. “When I decided to come to Kentucky, it was a dream of mine to win a national championship. I know my brothers and I were ready to go to war for our coaches, the university and Big Blue Nation to bring home the national title this year.
“The circumstances were unfortunate, but I am thankful that I was able to play for a great coach and coaching staff and compete every day in practice and in games to challenge myself to become a better all-around player.
“With that being said, I have decided to take the next step in my career and chase after my ultimate dream and declare for the NBA Draft. I would like to thank Coach Cal and the entire coaching staff for giving me this opportunity and challenging me to become a better player and a better young man. Also, my brothers for the grind and always having my back. I would like to thank my family and friends for all their support through this experience. And lastly, I would like to thank you, BBN!”
Montgomery appeared in 28 games during his sophomore season, starting 25. He averaged 6.1 points and 5.4 rebounds per game and totaled 31 total blocks, 12 steals and 17 assists.
“At 6-10 with perimeter skills, athleticism and an ability to block shots, someone is going to get a big-time prospect with EJ,” John Calipari said in a release. “His skill set is where the game is going. EJ has always had those tools, but what I’m so proud of is how he progressed, not only through his two seasons here but especially the last month of the season.
“I was excited for EJ going into the postseason because I really thought it was going to be a great opportunity to show all the work he’s put in. He was really playing his best basketball. I’m happy for EJ and his family and will continue to be here to help throughout this process.”
Kentucky’s entire starting lineup from the 2019-20 season has now entered the draft. Ashton Hagans was the first to announce the news, followed by Tyrese Maxey, Immanuel Quickley, and Nick Richards. When you add in the departures of Nate Sestina (graduation), Johnny Juzang (transfer) and Kahlil Whitney, Keion Brooks and Dontaie Allen will be Kentucky’s only returning players next season.