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Former UK great Ed Davender passes away

Photos via UK Athletics

Photo via UK Athletics

It is with a heavy heart that I pass along this news: after suffering a massive heart attack on Tuesday, former UK great Ed Davender passed away last night at the age of 49According to the Herald-Leader, Davender was kept on life support at UK Hospital until his mother, Juanita, could come be by his side.

Davender played at UK from 1984-1988 and ranks 11th on the all-time career scoring list with 1,637 points and eighth on the career assists list with 436. He came to Kentucky from Brooklyn, New York as a McDonald’s All-American, and started as a freshman for Joe B. Hall. Eddie Sutton coached him his final three years at Kentucky, during which he also led the Cats in free-throw accuracy. Davender is considered by many to be one of the most underrated players in UK history, sometimes forgotten in the shadow of his more famous teammates, Kenny Walker and Rex Chapman.

Photos via UK Athletics

Photos via UK Athletics

Sadly, Davender was known for scandal in recent years. In 2010, he was sentenced to eight years in prison for his participation in a UK basketball ticket scam that caused victims to lose tens of thousands of dollars. His public defender Denny Shepperd told the Herald-Leader that Davender pledged in court to “pay every penny” of what he owed.

As Kentucky fans, we will remember Davender most for his success on the court, and it’s no coincidence that his name came up more than once this season while we watched another great point guard play. Tyler Ulis reminds many of Davender, and the backcourt duo of Ulis and Murray will go down alongside Davender and Rex Chapman as the most successful in UK Basketball history.

Davender’s funeral will be held in Lexington, but arrangements are still being made.

Rest in peace, Wildcat.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

11 Comments for Former UK great Ed Davender passes away

  1. Twick39
    5:38 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    R.I.P. Ed

  2. Genocat
    5:45 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    So sad. RIP Ed.

  3. davidpat
    5:48 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    He will be remembered by many.

  4. j4stone
    7:13 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    Prayers for him and his family.

  5. dgtuk
    7:51 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    Watched him on several different occasions….very solid guard. Rest in Peace Ed. Thank you for you time at UK and God Bless You and Your Family!

  6. sincitycat
    7:52 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    Rest in peace Wildcat. Among other things I will remember about Ed was his clutch free throw shooting.

  7. bpisforuk
    8:28 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    I always remember Ed playing with tenacity and heart. Very reminiscent of this years point guard. Rest in Peace.

  8. terwilliger
    8:30 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    I knew Ed Davender. Not well, but I knew him. He was a regular customer at a store where I worked during college. He was a good man. Ed made some mistakes in his life, as we all do. Drugs and alcohol can make humble, kind, gentle people do stupid things.

    Ed was smooth on the court, and had a smooth personality off it. He was a very laid back dude who liked to have a good time, and loved the ladies. I know in my heart that he was truly sorry for his transgressions, and I hope that UK fans remember him as a nice, soft spoken guy who was very proud of his time as a Wildcat.

    Rest in peace Easy Ed. You will always be remembered fondly by this Cat fan.

  9. mikeintn
    9:51 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    Enjoyed watching Ed play, I’ll remember the good, I’m sure most of us have done things that we wish we could change, GOD bless he’s family and love ones.

  10. chimichanga
    11:05 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    R.I.P. 🙁

  11. BlueRktect
    11:53 pm April 29, 2016 Permalink

    Ed was one of my all time favorites. I had a class with him in ’86 with 200+ others & he was always smiling, lighting up the auditorium. My fondest memory was his Senior Night at Rupp. There had been pressure put on him all that week to prove he can dunk, as he never did his whole career…even in a break away. That last game I was fortunate enough to get front row seats with my friend, Tim. We got there early to watch warm ups & Ed was the focus. The arena was quiet & Tim yelled, “Throw one down tonight, Ed!”. He turned & looked at us with a big smile & gave the thumbs up. Ed never got the opportunity to prove to us that he could dunk that night & I remember he didn’t have a good game either. But it didn’t seem to bother him. He was smiling the whole game.