While last night’s NBA Draft featured a lot of manufactured drama from ESPN as they tried to create something of “Who will have the most picks? Kentucky or North Carolina” rivalry, the big story was when Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, both of the Kentucky Wildcats, went first and second in the draft, a first for the NBA and its storied history. That’s correct, the NBA has never had the top two picks in the Draft come from the same school, until now.
A quick look at the highlight reels for each player quickly reveals why both were such highly coveted prospects. I apologize in advance for any poor musical selections made by the producers:
For those who weren’t following the Draft, Davis was selected first by the New Orleans Hornets and Kidd-Gilchrist was selected second by the Charlotte Bobcats. The significance of the the one-two selection of two players from Kentucky was not lost on the Commonwealth, especially by head coach John Calipari, who wasted little time sharing his exuberance:
Cal: “Somebody told me they are going to call it the Blue Room instead of the Green Room.”
For those wondering how much each player will be making their first few years in the league, Darren Rovell’s got you covered here:
1 & done Wildcats Anthony Davis ($5,144,280) & Michael Kidd-Gilchrist ($4,602,720) will make a combined $9.7M next year.
The bragging points continued for the league Kentucky belongs to, the SEC:
If Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist & Bradley Beal all selected in Top 3, will mark 2nd time a conf had the Top 3 picks (ACC in 1986)
Calipari also let any potential recruits who might be listening know why it’s such a good idea for them to come to Kentucky:
“I don’t know what else you can add to our recruiting,” he said. “I just want to know, ‘How did you beat us on a kid?'”… “I just told you three years ago, ‘Let’s make this the gold standard,'” Calipari said in recalling the objective he set in his inaugural Big Blue Madness speech in 2009. “Let’s make this where every kid in America is growing up saying, ‘I want to play for Kentucky.'”… “In three years, we’ll have 10 percent of the league,” Calipari said with a touch of wonder in his voice.
Never miss an opportunity to strike the iron, especially if it’s hot, right Coach Cal?