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Updated ESPN Mock Draft Has 3 Wildcats Going in First Round

(Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports)

(Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports)

LaMelo Ball might be the topic of conversation in the 2020 NBA Draft world, but Kentucky is still making a great showing in ESPN‘s updated mock draft.

According to Jonathan Givony, three Wildcats – Kahlil Whitney, Tyrese Maxey, and Ashton Hagans – are all projected as first-round picks in next year’s draft with Whitney and Maxey expected to go in the lottery.

Givony and ESPN slot Whitney at No. 12 heading to the Detroit Pistons and Maxey at No. 14 joining the Dallas Mavericks. Hagans was listed just outside of the second round, coming in at No. 30 overall to the Boston Celtics.

*The predicted teams to land these players are mostly irrelevant, as standings will shift throughout the course of the season before heading into the Draft Lottery when the order is officially decided.*

Givony noted that an excellent showing this summer at the Nike Skills Academy has propelled Whitney up to No. 12 and slightly ahead of Maxey. And while another Kentucky freshman, Johnny Juzang, isn’t tabbed to go in the first two-rounds, Givony still notes that he could eventually turn into a first-round pick.

Kentucky’s open practice on Oct. 6 will surely host a slew of NBA scouts looking to get a live look at the next generation of NBA players to come out of Lexington. I wouldn’t be surprised to find a couple more Wildcats on this list as we move along into the season.

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Covering all things NBA and UK Hoops. Follow me on Twitter: @ZGeogheganKSR

23 Comments for Updated ESPN Mock Draft Has 3 Wildcats Going in First Round



  1. sportsbird66
    9:07 pm September 24, 2019 Permalink

    Don’t know about everyone else,but I always get excited wondering how many guys we can get in the NBA each year. Lol



    • Cokely53
      10:28 pm September 24, 2019 Permalink

      Usually that number is 1 or lower at louisville. Not much to wonder. Maybe you should spend more time wondering about what penalties the NCAA is going to slam on your ass?



    • sportsbird66
      12:02 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      I’m not a UL fan. I’m only a UK fan. It was a joke



    • Cokely53
      6:10 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      You have bird in your name and made fun of UK. Doesn’t really sound that way.



    • sportsbird66
      2:43 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

      Eat my nutsack



    • sportsbird66
      2:43 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

      Glad you know it all buttmunch



  2. CrystalBall
    10:32 pm September 24, 2019 Permalink

    Mock draft in September is a waste of time. Do people actually get paid to do this?



    • 2andToodleLoo
      7:19 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      Totally agree! This stuff is as dumb and irrelevant as bracketology.



    • TBW3011
      9:42 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      They are irrelevant until a few days before the draft. Most the mock draft guys are terrible at it.



  3. terwilliger
    10:39 pm September 24, 2019 Permalink

    Why would anybody be talking about LaMelo Ball? Kid is horrible



    • ColoradoCatFan88
      9:11 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      Horrible huh? So bad he’s projected to be a top 3 pick. He’s improved his game a lot & he’s a 6’7” combo guard.



    • nocode96
      10:59 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      Yeah terwilliger, rado cat is right. Ball actually has improved, grown, and put on strength. May (big May) end up better than lonzo. I know we like to get on these guys because of their idiot father, but melo and lonzo are both good enough to be in the nba legitimately. Also, not sure who still follows the saga, but lonzo has kinda distanced himself from their dad and even openly admits his dad screwed everything from their brand to their heads up.



    • UKFanSC
      1:27 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

      You have a MUCH higher opinion of the Ball brothers than many…..I think both are extremely overrated, and will be long forgotten before either makes an impact in the NBA.



  4. sportsbird66
    12:04 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

    I was just goofing around. I realize we are in a place to win every year because of the great talent we get. I’m all in on Cal and UK. Have been for over 50 years



    • wyatts1
      8:53 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

      Dont get to worked up over some people on this site who doesn’t know how to speak or recognize a joke. Most are passionate fans but some bandwagon fans will always be around and mess it up for everyone. I’ve noticed when these kids play for the names on the front of their Jersey that more often then not, the names on the back ends up getting paid quiet well.



  5. msnthrop
    6:22 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

    It will be the greatest day in the history of the Kentucky Wildcats!



  6. IrishCat
    6:54 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

    Don’t sleep on EJ.



    • ColoradoCatFan88
      9:12 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

      EJ has A LOT to accomplish before he’s considered a 1st round pick. Not saying he isn’t fully capable, but he needs to improve in all areas of his game this season.



  7. TBW3011
    9:43 am September 25, 2019 Permalink

    Hagans will go much higher than projected. Breakout year



    • royce12
      6:45 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

      100% agree. He will go in the top 15 or 16 picks.



  8. UKFanSC
    12:37 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

    EJ ???



  9. TimLH
    1:24 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

    Ball will not be a top 10 pick



    • UKFanSC
      3:01 pm September 25, 2019 Permalink

      I’d be shocked if he were drafted