On the night of the NBA’s official return to action on Thursday evening, former Kentucky star Anthony Davis was the best player on the floor for either team in either game.
Finishing the day with a game-high 34 points on 8-19 shooting, 2-5 from three, and 16-17 from the free throw line, along with eight rebounds, and four assists, Davis helped lead the Los Angeles Lakers to a 103-101 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers.
Here are some of the former Wildcat’s highlights from the victory:
Anthony Davis vs Clippers
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) July 31, 2020
Patrick Patterson was the only other former Kentucky player to take the floor in the two-game restart opening night, finishing with five points on 2-2 shooting, four rebounds, and two assists in just under 22 minutes of action.
Outside the two former Wildcats, the Clippers’ Paul George and Kawhi Leonard finished with 30 points and 28 points, respectively, while LeBron James managed a near triple-double in his return to action, putting up a smooth 16 points, 11 rebounds, and seven assists in the win.
Prior to the highly anticipated matchup between the Lakers and Clippers was the return of Zion Williamson, as his New Orleans Pelicans took on the Utah Jazz in game one of the evening.
In a 106-104 victory, the Jazz were led by Jordan Clarkson with 23 points, followed by 20 points apiece from Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley. Rudy Gobert – the player who unofficially ended the season the first time around as the first player to test positive for the coronavirus – also added 14 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks. Ironically, Gobert scored the first basket of the NBA restart and hit two game-winning free throws to close out the game.
As for the Pelicans, Brandon Ingram led the way with 23 points in the loss, followed by JJ Redick with 21 and Jrue Holiday with 20. Williamson, who was limited in his first game after missing all of New Orleans’ exhibition games, finished with an efficient 13 points on 6-8 shooting in 15 minutes of action.
More former Wildcats set to return to action on Friday
After a successful opening night of the NBA restart down in Orlando, FL at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, several other former Kentucky stars are set to return to the floor on Friday.
With five games scheduled throughout the day, Wenyen Gabriel will get things rolling among BBNBA members, as his Portland Trail Blazers are set to take on the Memphis Grizzlies at 4:00 p.m ET on NBA TV.
At the same time, Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns will take on the Washington Wizards on NBA League Pass.
From there, Enes Kanter and the Boston Celtics will take on the Milwaukee Bucks at 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN. While Kanter will take the floor, initial reports indicate that former UK guard Eric Bledsoe will not play for the Bucks this evening as he slowly works his way back to game shape following the time off, and more recently, testing positive for the coronavirus.
As we head into the evening, De’Aaron Fox and the Sacramento Kings will take on a San Antonio Spurs squad featuring both Trey Lyles and Keldon Johnson at 8:00 p.m. ET on League Pass.
And then to close out the night, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and the Dallas Mavericks will take on the Houston Rockets at 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Here is the entire schedule of games:
- Orlando Magic vs. Brooklyn Nets – 2:30 p.m. (League Pass)
- Memphis Grizzlies vs. Portland Trail Blazers – 4 p.m. (NBA TV)
- Phoenix Suns vs. Washington Wizards – 4 p.m.(League Pass)
- Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks – 6:30 p.m. (ESPN)
- Sacramento Kings vs. San Antonio Spurs – 8 p.m. (League Pass)
- Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks – 9 p.m. (ESPN)
SEC announces 10-game conference-only schedule
The Southeastern Conference has officially announced its plans for the 2020 football season, and needless to say, things are going to be quite a bit different this fall.
In an announcement made Thursday afternoon, the league established September 26 as the new kickoff for the season, with teams set to play a 10-game Conference-only schedule.
With this news, Kentucky’s annual rivalry matchup against the Louisville Cardinals has officially been canceled.
After the regular season, the SEC Football Championship Game will be played December 19 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, rescheduled from the original date of December 5.
“Our adjusted schedule puts us in the best possible position to play the 2020 football season,” UK athletics director Mitch Barnhart said in a statement. “We are excited to focus as a football program and an athletics department on preparing to kick off the season on Sept. 26.
“I fully support the SEC’s decision to move to conference-only games, though we are disappointed we won’t have the chance to compete with Louisville for the Governor’s Cup this season. That series means a great deal to the Commonwealth and we look forward to working with Louisville to continue the series in seasons to come.”
“I’m glad there is a plan in place so we can move forward with preparations for the season,” Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops added. “I understand and support the decision to begin on September 26. Everyone would like to play a full schedule, including our rivalry game with Louisville, but this timing and format gives us our best opportunity to adjust to these unique circumstances.”
Surprise contestant conquers Shannon the Dude’s 50-mile walk
While Shannon the Dude decided to postpone his 50-mile walk throughout Lexington due to weather, a brand new surprise competitor decided to steal the show Thursday evening.
Travis York, an avid KSR fan and owner of the Hillbilly Hibachi food truck in Eastern Kentucky, completed the full 50-mile challenge in less than ten hours, rolling into KSBar and Grille this morning at 6:30 a.m.
Completing the challenge with an official time of 9:51:12 and an average pace of 11:49 minutes per mile, York absolutely crushed it.
Well done, Mr. York. Well done.
KSR in an hour
Matt Jones and the KSR crew are set to break down the NBA’s return to action, the SEC’s massive decision, and make fun of Shannon the Dude for two hours.
Tune in from 10 a.m. ET to noon.