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Five Wildcats featured in ESPN’s NBA best 25 under 25 rankings

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

It’s no secret that the Kentucky basketball program has produced some of the top up-and-coming names in the NBA. In fact, four of the top ten players under 25 years old came from the University of Kentucky.

In ESPN’s NBA best 25 under 25 rankings, five Wildcats were included overall and four were listed in the top ten, led by De’Aaron Fox at No. 6, Devin Booker at No. 8, Bam Adebayo at No. 9, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander at No. 10, and Jamal Murray at No. 13.

Among the long list of rationale for their inclusions in the top 25, Fox is one of only seven players in the NBA averaging at least 24 points and 7 assists per game, while Booker is averaging a career high in steals and posting a 109.2 defensive rating — the second best in his career. Booker joins Ben Simmons as the only players to make the list five straight years.

From there, Adebayo has increased his scoring average by 3.4 points per game to 19.2, while continuing to pull down 9.6 rebounds and dish out 5.4 assists per contest. Gilgeous-Alexander is one of only eight players to average at least 23 points and five assists on over 60% true shooting, while Murray leads all players on the list with 6.8 wins produced.

Check out the top 15 picks in ESPN’s feature, which also includes another familiar name in Murray State’s Ja Morant at No. 15 overall:

  1. Luka Doncic (Dallas)
  2. Zion Williamson (New Orleans)
  3. LaMelo Ball (Charlotte)
  4. Donovan Mitchell (Utah)
  5. Jayson Tatum (Boston)
  6. De’Aaron Fox (Sacramento
  7. Ben Simmons (Philadelphia)
  8. Devin Booker (Phoenix)
  9. Bam Adebayo (Miami)
  10. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (Oklahoma City)
  11. Brandon Ingram (New Orleans)
  12. Jaylen Brown (Boston)
  13. Jamal Murray (Denver)
  14. Michael Porter Jr. (Denver)
  15. Ja Morant (Memphis)

For the entire list, head on over to ESPN+ here. 

Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

4 Comments for Five Wildcats featured in ESPN’s NBA best 25 under 25 rankings

  1. BlueBanker18
    11:50 am April 7, 2021 Permalink

    Luka at #1 I can understand, but Zion and Melo at #2 and #3 while Booker and Adebayo are #8 and #9? Total disrespect.

    • barrybee
      12:28 pm April 7, 2021 Permalink

      Melo ahead of Ja Morant, c’mon man!

  2. You Can Call Me Cal
    12:28 pm April 7, 2021 Permalink

    If I’m choosing a team, I’m taking Booker above Fox, and I’m a Kings fan living in Sacramento

    • RogerW
      8:50 pm April 7, 2021 Permalink

      100 agree. As far as ex cats under 25, Booker is hands down #1.