By LARRY VAUGHT
When I posted the story about Kentucky sophomore guard Ashton Hagans declaring for the NBA draft, I noted that I worried a bit about his outside shooting maybe hurting his chances for a long NBA career.
That led reader Jeff Cracraft to comment that he was better than Maxey and I responded that NBA personnel I knew thought Maxey would likely be a lottery pick in the draft and Hagans no better than a mid-second round choice.
Cracraft strongly disagree and offered to bet $100 to $1,000 that Maxey would not be a lottery pick. I ignored the offer — but vaughtsviews.com contributor Tina Cox did not.
She initially offered to wager Cracraft $100 in gift cards to help local merchants. Cracraft wanted no part of the gift card idea but they did agree to a $100 cash wager. If Maxey is a lottery pick as many project, Cracraft gives Cox $100. If Maxey is not a lottery pick, Cox gives Cracraft $100.
Several UK fans disagreed with Cracraft’s comments.
“I deleted my post to stop getting the responses from the crazed yahoos,” Cracraft said when I asked why I could no longer find his comments. “Bet is still on via DM (direct message) with her.”
I checked with Cox. She has a “confirmed” wager and saved copy of Cracraft’s wager.
So who will be right? I checked NBAdraft.net for its composite mock draft analysis and it has Maxey listed No. 16 — two spots out of the top 14 picks that make up the “lottery.”
What is a bit intriguing to me is that the only SEC player rated higher than Maxey is Georgia freshman Anthony Edwards, the likely No. 1 overall pick. Washington has two former UK targets — Jaden McDaniels (7) and Isaiah Stewart (14) — in the lottery. The draft has two players from Europe in the top eight, James Wiseman who left Memphis early in his freshman season at No. 2 and two players — LaMelo Ball (3) and RJ Hampton (12) — in the lottery who opted to play overseas rather than even play in college.
And NBAdraft.net’s composite ranking has Hagans going 26th in the first round to justify UK coach John Calipari’s comments about him being ready for the NBA.
Of course, mock drafts don’t always really indicate what will happen on draft day and not knowing if there will be onsite interviews/workouts or even when the draft will be, this year there might be even more uncertainty.
The only known is that either Cracraft or Cox will be watching the NBA draft intently waiting to see who wins and who loses this UK fan bet.