John Calipari Thinks Kentucky Could Lose 5-7 Players to the NBA Draft

by April 07, 2015

Kentucky basketball has developed a reputation under John Calipari as a school that highly-regarded recruits go to for one year before bolting to the NBA. While that has brought Calipari a ton of success, it also means that he will lose a ton of players each year. According to Calipari, he thinks that could happen this year in a big way. Kentucky’s coach estimates that he will lose somewhere between five and seven players to the NBA Draft this year.

Ultimately, the decision is up to each individual player, but Cal expects Willie Cauley-Stein, Andrew Harrison, Aaron Harrison, Karl-Anthony Towns and Trey Lyles to enter the Draft, while he isn’t sure about Dakari Johnson and Devin Booker.

From ESPN:

Kentucky coach John Calipari knows it’s only a matter of time before his players seek success at the next level, and he expects five to seven players to make the jump to the NBA this offseason.


“There’s not going to be any brainwashing, forcing, pushing either in or out,” Calipari told reporters in Indianapolis on Monday after his election to the Basketball Hall of Fame. “I want each kid to make a decision for themselves.


“I did tell a couple of the kids that it’s a man’s league; it’s not a child’s league. If you’re not ready for a man’s league, you need to come back.”


The Wildcats are coming off a 38-1 season, losing to Wisconsin in the national semifinals on Saturday.


“We could lose seven guys,” Calipari said. “I would guess five at the minimum. But I would say seven is a distinct possibility.”


Calipari projects that Willie Cauley-Stein, Andrew Harrison, Aaron Harrison, Karl-Anthony Towns and Trey Lyles will declare for the NBA draft. He’s not so sure about Dakari Johnson and Devin Booker.


“It’s time to take another step,” Cauley-Stein told reporters after the Wildcats’ loss to Wisconsin. “I mean, obviously, I’m not 100 percent on it, but I’m pretty sure I know what I want to do. Gotta talk to a couple more people, but probably was my last game here.


“… You know, we’ll never be on the same team like this again. That’s going to set in. We got a month of school left with each other, and that’s it. I mean, that’s what you’ll remember.”