The Kentucky Wildcats recently flirted with perfection during the 2015 NCAA Tournament with John Calipari’s squad dominating the competition until they ran into a motivated Wisconsin Badgers squad led by Frank Kaminsky in the Final Four.
With the Wildcats falling short of an NCAA title, the attention turns to the upcoming 2015 NBA draft. Quite a few of Calipari’s players are expected to enter the draft, so much so that the University of Kentucky will hold a press conference to announce the players declaring on Thursday, according to Kyle Tucker of The Courier-Journal:
The suspense, or at least most of it, will be over soon. The University of Kentucky men’s basketball program will hold a press conference Thursday at 2:30 p.m. featuring coach John Calipari and an unspecified group of players “who are ready to announce their NBA Draft decisions.”
Calipari believes that at least five of his players will declare, but there could be as much as seven, via Jerry Tipton of KentuckySports.com:
The UK coach spoke of several of his players entering this June’s NBA Draft.
“We could lose seven guys,” he said Monday. “I would guess five at the minimum. But I would say seven is a distinct possibility.”
Among the players expected to declare for the NBA draft, Karl-Anthony Towns is expected to be taken first or second overall. Towns improved his draft stock over the course of the NCAA Tournament and may have surpassed Duke’s Jahlil Okafor as the prospect that could be the top pick come June 25.
Other notable Kentucky players that could elect enter the draft are Willie Cauley-Stein, Trey Lyles, Devin Booker and Dakari Johnson. Andrew and Aaron Harrison already expected to declare on Thursday along with many of their Kentucky teammates.
With the Los Angeles Lakers expected to have a high lottery pick in the upcoming draft, the team could potentially go after Towns or Cauley-Stein depending on draft position.
Last year, the Lakers drafted a potential franchise player in the form of another Kentucky standout in Julius Randle. If the team drafts Cauley-Stein, he’ll reunite with Randle in Los Angeles.
Other notable draft prospects expected to be in consideration in the top five is D’Angelo Russell (Ohio State), Emmanuel Mudiay (China), Justise Winslow (Duke) and Okafor.
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