Before he even stepped foot on campus, Tyrese Maxey was dubbed a fan favorite. After a few minutes in the freshman’s presence, it’s easy to see why. The 6’3″ guard from Garland, Texas with the perma-grin has an infectious energy, even through the exhausting exercise that is Kentucky Basketball Media Day.
“It’s something we have to do and it doesn’t bother me at all,” Maxey said of answering the same questions over and over again. “I just smile through it like I smile through everything else.”
Does Maxey ever stop smiling?
“Oooh, when I’m asleep maybe. Some people say I smile in my sleep but maybe when I’m asleep I stop smiling.”
Maxey credited his positive attitude to his parents and the fact that each morning, he gets to wake up and do what he loves.
“It’s very important. I feel like my mom always told me, if you wake up in the morning everyday, it’ll be another day, so there’s no reason to be upset. I love playing basketball and I get to do it every single day with great people and a great coach and it makes me happy.”
On the court, Maxey is expected to be Kentucky’s top scorer. John Calipari compared him to Jamal Murray in terms of versatility on the offensive end, and on the defensive end, said he’s right up there with Ashton Hagans when it comes to creating nightmares for opposing backcourts. That should be enough for fans to count down the minutes until they see Maxey in action, and he wants you to know he’s doing the same. All of the players are excited for Big Blue Madness next Friday, but none more so than Maxey.
“I’ve been sitting on the sidelines watching for two years so I can’t wait to be a part of it,” Maxey said of Madness. “Just the energy in the building. We’re not really even doing anything, we’re just coming out and dancing, doing a little dunk contest, but the energy is still so high and everybody’s having a good time doing it. I just can’t wait.”
“This is like the first time in my life I’ve had a fanbase like this so I can’t wait.”