Isaac Humphries took an unconventional route to the NBA.
A two-year player at the University of Kentucky, the forward began his professional basketball career by returning to his home of Australia to play in the NBL. After earning Rookie of the Year honors, he played a season in Serbia, then went to the G-League. Humphries parlayed that into a roster spot with the Atlanta Hawks.
In a conversation with DeWayne Peevy on Kentucky Sports Radio, Humphries credits Kentucky for paving his way into the NBA.
“Every single thing that I went into in my pro contracts, I learned from Kentucky,” said Humphries. “I learned everything about being a pro. I learned how to attack things. I learned how to fight, on the court that is. I learned how to value what I bring to a team. I learned a lot of stuff at Kentucky and that prepared me for every professional league I played in.”
It took some time for Humphries to adjust to professional basketball. Through all the hardships, he leaned on his experience at UK.
“The biggest difference between Kentucky and the NBL, the Australian league, is even though I was playing against NBA players at practice everyday at Kentucky, in the NBL you just get the difference of the fully grown man factor of the veterans who have been professionals for 10 years. That’s just something you just don’t get in college.
“That was an adjustment, but like I said, everything that comes along with being a Kentucky basketball player prepared me for those moments. When it got hard, I just used techniques I learned at Kentucky for when things got hard. That’s what college is for, to prepare you for the next level. A lot of my development was mental, off the court. Obviously, my body changed. I developed on the court as well.” He added:
“A lot of how I deal with things now I was taught at Kentucky. Everything that I was taught and everything I learned at Kentucky stays with me now. I use it everyday.”
Humphries is returning to Lexington next weekend, but not to play basketball. He’s taking his musical talents to the Lexington Opera House Sunday, June 23. The event will benefit Lexington’s Ronald McDonald House.
“Every cent is going to the Ronald McDonald House. I think we need to come together and really try to help these families who have sick children and are really struggling. That’s my challenge to the BBN, to fill the theater and make as much money as we can for that awesome organization.”
To sweeten the deal, every person who purchases tickets today will receive a free meet and greet following the show. Click here to take advantage of the incredible opportunity.
“You’re going to need to be there. It’s going to be a really awesome night.”