Good morning, friends. It’s Monday, but not just any Monday. This is a happy Monday. This is a happy Monday because we just had an amazing weekend with the Forrest Gump victory lap, the Kentucky Derby, and, of course, Kevin Knox. Gump won our movie bracket on Friday; you hit the Derby winner if you listened to our Venezuelan friend Eloy on Friday’s show; and Knox shocked the world on Saturday. So let’s talk about it!
1. Kevin Knox. Wow. Biggest surprise in the Calipari era. The five-star small forward was down to Duke, North Carolina, Florida State and Kentucky, and there wasn’t a person out there predicting it would be Kentucky. I talked to a couple folks who do the recruiting stuff for a living and they said it was one of the biggest shockers they’ve ever seen. Heck, it’s almost two days later and I’m still wondering if it really happened or if this is all a big dream. But it happened — Kevin Knox is going to be a Wildcat. Those scoring concerns with next year’s roster aren’t so concerning anymore. Cal finally got himself a true small forward.
2. Kenny Payne. If you cried after receiving the Kevin Knox news, you weren’t alone. Knox’s commitment brought UK assistant coach Kenny Payne to tears, according to this story, and many of you were right there with him. Knox’s father told Kyle Tucker, “He texted and was like, ‘I can’t talk right now’ – and he put a little smiley face with a tear – ‘I’m so emotional, I’m crying.’ Then he was able to call like 10 minutes later.” Knox Sr. said the UK coaching staff found out when everyone else found out.
3. The decision. Knox explained his decision via his own blog on USA Today High School Sports:
There were a lot of reasons why I chose Kentucky; first the coaching staff is phenomenal! They know how to get players to the league and get them outside of their comfort zone and push players to the limit. Then I’ll be playing with a lot of great players every day in practice getting better against the best competition and, lastly, they know how to win.
Read his entire “Why I Chose Kentucky” blog here.
4. Hamidou Diallo. The addition of Kevin Knox will make it a little easier on our hearts if Hamidou Diallo decides to stay in the draft. I still think he comes back, but now he’s decided he will not participate in the 5-on-5 at the combine. That is a smart move for him if he plans to remain in the draft; however, I’m still not sure there are any teams out there that would roll the dice on him in the first round. In my uninformed and unprofessional opinion, we’ll know how much he hates school if he doesn’t come back. That’s the only thing I see that would keep in the draft because there isn’t a positive word out there about him right now as far as being one of the first 25-30 names called. We’ll know more once the combine starts tomorrow.
5. “Mo you next.” I love this video of Quade Green showing off Kevin Knox’s tweet at the Ball Is Life All-American Game and then shouting “Mo you next…”
— HoopFocus (@TheHoopFocus) May 7, 2017
Green’s abilities at the next level remain to be seen, but he is already a proven recruiter and cheerleader for Kentucky at the high school level.
6. Cam Johnson. Does Knox’s commitment keep Johnson from committing? Knox might’ve done Arizona a favor because Kentucky was the presumed leader before Knox, but now it’s getting a little crowded on the wing. He’d be wise to wait it out to see what Hamidou Diallo does before making his decision. And I think he will.
7. John Wall. Our favorite NBA point guard is finally getting the attention, recognition and love he deserves in the league. He is one of the best players in the playoffs right now and there’s no more looking past him and the Wizards. NBA fans are FINALLY noticing his greatness.
And in related news, we had a James Young sighting in last night’s Wizards/Celtics game.
8. Matt’s suit. It was/is incredible. If I owned that fine piece from the Steve Harvey Collection (that’s really the brand), you wouldn’t be able to get it off of me.
9. FORREST GUMP. Of all the great things I have been a part of in my time with KSR, Forrest Gump winning the movie bracket was the best. Thank you.
10. KSR radio. Tune in to KSR morning radio in one hour because we have A LOT to talk about.