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Six Cats have NBA Draft Combine invitations

Hamidou Diallo (Vicky Graff Photo)


Sources indicate that six Kentucky players have been invited to the upcoming NBA Draft Combine in Chicago May 16-20.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Kevin Knox and Hamidou Diallo all entered the draft and hired agents — meaning they will not be back at UK.

P.J. Washington, Jarred Vanderbilt and Wenyen Gabriel have put their name into the draft without hiring an agent — meaning they could choose to return to UK if they don’t get the evaluation they want or need from NBA officials.

There are different type combine invitations and the NBA has yet to confirm any list of who has been invited.

The league sends out invites to top prospects that don’t require participation in on-court activities; a conditional invitation to mid-range prospects that requires full participation in all combine activities; and  a request for further information to lower-end prospects in which a decision on whether that player will get a full invitation at a later date.

Names of several players who have been invited to the combine have leaked out.

Guards Devonte’ Graham, Malik Newman and Svi Mykhailiuk of Kanwqw all received invites, the Journal-World confirmed. Later Kansas  announced Udoka Azubuike and Billy Preston did, too, and that. Lagerald Vick is an alternate.

Duke’s Marvin Bagley, Gary Trent, Wendell Carter and Trevon Duval also apparently all have been invited along with Nevada’s Caleb Martin.

Here is a list of players who have filed for the draft and hired an agent with’s draft projection:

— Rawle Alkins: Soph., SG/SF – Arizona (Early-to-Mid Second Round)

— DeAndre Ayton: Fy., C – Arizona (Top 3)

— DJ Hogg: Jr., SF – Texas A&M (Late Second Round to Undrafted)

— Troy Brown: Fy., SG – Oregon (Mid First Round)

— LiAngelo Ball: SG – Lithuania (Undrafted)

— Jalen Brunson: Jr., PG – Villanova (Late First to Early Second Round)

— Mo Bamba: Fy., C – Texas (Lottery)

— Mitchell Robinson: Fy. C – Western Kentucky (Mid-to-Late First Round)

— Keita Bates-Diop: Jr., PF – Ohio State (Mid-to-Late Second Round)

— Miles Bridges: Soph., SF – Michigan State (Lottery-to-Mid First Round)

— Bruce Brown: Soph., PG/SG – Miami (Late Second Round)

— Eric Davis Jr.: Jr., SG – Texas (Undrafted)

— Trevon Duval: Fy , PG/SG- Duke (Late First to Early Second)

— Robert Franks: Jr., SF – Washington State (Undrafted)

— Harry Froling: Soph., C – Marquette (Undrafted)

— Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: Fy., PG – Kentucky (Mid to Late First Round)

— Aaron Holiday: Jr., PG – UCLA (Late First Round)

— Wendell Carter Jr: Fy., PF – Duke (First Round)

— Brandon McCoy: Fy., PF – UNLV (Late First to Early Second Round)

— Chimezie Metu: Jr., PF – Southern Cal (Mid-to-Late First Round)

— Michael Porter Jr.: Fy., SF/PF – Missouri (Top 5)

— Trae Young: Fy., PG/SG – Oklahoma (Lottery)

— Anfernee Simons: PG – IMG Academy (Mid-Second Round)

— Marvin Bagley III: Fy., PF – Duke (Top 3)

— Jack McVeigh: Jr., SF/PF – Nebraska (Undrafted)

— Marcus Derrickson: Jr., F – Georgetown (Undrafted)

— De’Anthony Melton: Soph., SG – Southern Cal (Late Second Round to Undrafted)

Justin Jackson: Soph., SF/PF – Maryland (Late Second Round to Undrafted)

— Robert Williams: Soph., PF/C – Texas A&M (Lottery to Mid First Round)

— Landry Shamet: Soph., PG/SG – Wichita State (Mid to Late Second Round)

— Jaren Jackson Jr.: Fy., PF – Michigan State (Late First Round to Early Second Round)

— Tony Carr: Soph., PG – Penn State (Late Second Round to Undrafted)

— William McDowell-White: PG/ SG – Austrailia (Second Round)

— Collin Sexton: Fy. PG – Alabama (Lottery)

— Leron Black: Jr. (RS), SF – Illinois (Second Round)

— Ray Spalding: Jr. PF – Louisville (Late Second to Undrafted)

— Allonzo Trier: Jr., G – Arizona (Late Second Round)

— Drew Eubanks: Jr., F – Oregon State (Undrafted)

— Mustapha Heron: So., G – Auburn (Late Second to Undrafted)

— Terry Larrier: Jr. (RS), SF – UConn (Undrafted)

— Matur Maker: PF – Mississauga Prep (Canada), (Late Second to Undrafted)

— Jack McVeigh: Jr., F – Nebraska (Undrafted)

— Corey Sanders: Jr., G – Rutgers (:ate Second to Undrafted)

— Malik Newman: Soph., G – Kansas (Late First Round)

— Lonnie Walker: Fy., G – Miami (Mid-to-Late First Round)

— Kevin Knox: Fy., F – Kentucky (Lottery)



  1. I have read that the number of players, either in with agents, or testing the waters, including top 100 eligible seniors, in this year’s draft is extremely high for the 60 available draft slots. In Larry’s list of players eligible with agents, there are 46. SI has a list of top 100 players in with agents at 44. Not sure where the difference is in these two lists, but that difference seems minor when you consider SI also shows

    35 top 100 players “testing the waters” without an agent,
    17 top 100 players who are seniors, and their use or non-use of an agent is irrelevant
    20 non-top 100 players who in the draft with agents
    135 non-top 100 players who are “testing the waters” without agents.

    That is 251 players, of which 81 are either in the draft with agents or seniors, and 170 are testing the waters.

    Now we learn that all 6 UK players, including the 3 “testing the waters” are invited to the combine suggests UK has 6 players in the top 60 players either in the draft or at least testing the water. I call BS on that entire idea. However, considering this is indeed a correct conclusion, then how in the heck could the 2017-18 UK basketball team have really turned in the poorest season long performance of the Calipari Era.

    Inquiring minds want to know.

    BTW, in the first 8 years, every single UK player who was one and done, was taken in the first round of the draft. Calipari has hung his defense of this system in part on this statistic as proof that his system is working, especially within the context of the players first philosophy. I get that, and I accept that as an appropriate criteria because first round selections get that 3 year guaranteed money, which no player should sneeze at if it is placed on the table.

    This year, I believe this little tidbit will end. This year, UK will lose a one year player who is not taken in the first round, further revealing the flaw in the approach we have witnessed over the last 9 years as the migration of freshmen into the draft after only 1 year has expanded, and the attrition of sophomore and junior players through transfers and movement to pro ball (not necessarily the NBA) has expanded.

    With both expansions in the migration and attrition patterns, the skeleton of a roster that remains for the next season become more and more difficult to sustain a competitive program.

  2. Just read elsewhere that Gabriel was NOT invited. This post did not have any link to a source.

    Larry, can you confirm that Gabriel has or has not been invited to the combine?

    1. Sorry Professor Just saw this. My source indicated he was invited but not sure at what level. That’s what makes it hard to know. All along scouts told me overseas was likely best option of him and this would seem to confirm that

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