LEXINGTON, Ky. – As the Kentucky men’s basketball program enjoys another life-changing night for a handful of NBA Draft hopefuls on Thursday, Big Blue Nation will be able enjoy a UK-draft-focused live stream for the inaugural Kentucky Basketball Draft Show, Presented by Bluegrass Hospitality Group.
Kentucky and the UK Sports Network will host a live show Thursday at 7:30 p.m. with wall-to-wall coverage of UK’s four draft hopefuls, PJ Washington, Tyler Herro, Keldon Johnson and Reid Travis. The show will coincide with official NBA Draft coverage on ESPN – which starts at 7 p.m. – and feature co-hosts of the “Behind Kentucky Basketball” podcast, assistant coach Joel Justus, and TJ Beisner, editor of CoachCal.com and host of UK Sports Network’s “This is Kentucky Basketball.”
The Kentucky Basketball Draft Show will feature exclusive UK content of the draft. Live coverage from the Joe Craft Center, Kentucky’s practice facility, will feature special guests and interviews with former players, real-time analysis from Justus and Beisner, appearances from some of UK’s current players, features and more.
In addition to the show, @KentuckyMBB will feature behind-the-scenes access at the NBA Draft on its Twitter [nam04.safelinks.protection.outlook.com], Facebook [nam04.safelinks.protection.outlook.com] and Instagram [nam04.safelinks.protection.outlook.com] social channels.
The show will serve as a backdrop for what should be another banner night for the most prolific NBA-producing program over the last 10 years. Since John Calipari arrived at Kentucky for the 2009-10 season, UK has helped 35 players earn selection in the NBA Draft, more than any other school. UK has produced 26 first-round draft picks during that time period, 19 lottery selections, 13 top-10 picks and three No. 1 overall draftees.
Those numbers are expected to grow Thursday with three Wildcats slated to go in the first round of most major draft boards.
· 126 Wildcats have been drafted 128 times (Johnny Cox ’58 and Roger Newman ’60 both drafted in Jr. eligible draft, but returned for senior year and were drafted again)
· 49 UK players have been selected in the opening round (26 have come in the last nine years) of the draft
· Kentucky has helped 35 players earn selection in the draft over the last nine years, 14 more than the next closest school (Duke)
· UK has had 13 players selected in the top 10, 19 in the top 15 and 26 in the first round of the draft in the last nine years
· The Wildcats have had at least one player taken in the top nine of the draft in nine consecutive seasons. Since the lottery began in 1985, only two teams have had more than one player taken in at least four consecutive drafts (Kentucky, 2010-18 and Kansas, 2012-15)
· Calipari has had two or more players selected in 11 consecutive NBA drafts dating back to 2008 with Memphis
· UK has had multiple first-round picks in every year of the Calipari era (since 2010)
· In 26 seasons as a head coach, Calipari has coached 46 NBA Draft picks, including 32 first-round selections with 17 of those going in the top 10. He has had 35 selected in the last nine years as UK’s head coach, including 26 coming in the opening round
· Since the draft moved to two rounds in 1989, the Wildcats lead all schools with 37 first-round picks. Twenty-six of those selections have come in the last nine years under Calipari
· Calipari has helped produce four No. 1 overall selections (Derrick Rose, John Wall, Anthony Davis and Karl-Anthony Towns) during the nine drafts from 2008 to 2016. No other coach has more than two No. 1 picks
· In 2010, five UK players were selected in the first round for the first time in NBA history
· Kentucky’s six players in the 2012 and 2015 NBA drafts are the most in the two-round era
· Of the 55 players who have finished their college careers at UK under Calipari, 35 have been selected in the NBA Draft (prior to the end of 2018-19), a 63.6-percent success rate. Another five of those made the NBA, and the majority of the rest were walk-ons
· Of the 25 players at Kentucky who have declared for the NBA Draft after their freshman seasons, 23 have been first-round picks. All have played a game in the NBA. Calipari is 27 for 29 in that regard when including his players from Memphis
· Dating back to the 2008 draft, 40 players under Calipari have been taken in the NBA Draft, including 28 first-rounders
· UK is the only school to produce the top two picks in the same draft (2012 – Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist)