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Former Cats Make Cut For NBA Combine; EJ Montgomery Not On List

By KEITH TAYLOR

LEXINGTON, Ky. — A list of potential invites to the NBA Combine has been compiled and it includes five former Kentucky players.

Ashton Hagans, Tyrese Maxey, Immanuel Quickley, Nick Richards and former Wildcat Kahlil Whitney made the list. EJ Montgomery didn’t make the cut of 60-70 top invites to the Combine, which has been postponed until next month, although a date has yet officially been set for the combine.

The date for withdrawal is Aug. 3 and the NBA Draft is now set for Oct. 16.

The Wildcats finished with a 25-6 record last season and won the Southeastern Conference regular-season title. Kentucky compiled a 15-3 mark in the SEC. Quickley was named SEC Player of the Year.

“My hope is this becomes one of the favorite teams in at least my era here, that this team becomes that,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said. “And the individual stories were incredible. From Nick (Richards) to Immanuel (Quickley) to Tyrese (Maxey) to Ashton (Hagans) to EJ (Montgomery), how he’s improved, to Keion (Brooks Jr.).”

Calipari enjoyed watching Quickley blossom into one of the team’s top players last year.

“I think, again, (he is)  one of the great kids that I’ve ever coached,” he said. “One of the most grounded young men that I’ve ever coached.” 

The NBA is set to resume its season Thursday in Orlando, Florida. Overall, 17 former Kentucky players are part of 22 teams playing in Walt Disney World in Florida. 

Enes Kanter (Boston Celtics), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Dallas Mavericks), Jamal Murray (Denver Nuggets), Patrick Patterson (L.A. Clippers), Anthony Davis (L.A. Lakers), Rajon Rondo (Lakers, injured), Tyler Herro (Miami Heat), Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat), Eric Bledsoe (Milwaukee Bucks), Hamidou Diallo, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Nerlens Noel (Oklahoma City Thunder), Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns), Kenyan Gabriel (Portland Trail Blazers), De’Aaron Fox (Sacramento Kings) and Keldon Johnson and Trey Lyles (injured, San Antonio Spurs) will compete in Orlando.

ATHLETES RETURNING

More student athletes are returning to the University of Kentucky.

A total of 60 student-athletes mostly from men’s soccer, swimming and diving have returned to campus since July 8 and five of those tests positive for COVID-19. Three tested positive for past infection through antibody tests and two tested positive for the coronavirus.

The school’s 25 staff members tested and one was positive and was required to quarantine and adhere to CDC guidelines.

The women’s basketball team currently is in the process of returning to campus and will undergo several tests before voluntary workouts begin.

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Keith Taylor
Keith Taylor is an award-winning journalist who has covered Kentucky athletics since 1995. He is the sports editor of Kentucky Today and his work appears in 12 daily newspapers as well as various weekly and web sites throughout the state. Reach him at Keith.taylor@kentuckytoday.com or twitter @keithtaylor 21.

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