Tyrese Maxey is the latest Kentucky player to declare for the 2020 NBA Draft, joining Ashton Hagans who made the same announcement Sunday.
Maxey was one of the top freshman in the country this season, averaging 14.0 points per game for the Wildcats, who won their 49th SEC regular season championship.
Maxey will be remembered at Kentucky for his ability to perform at a high level on the biggest of stages. His 27 point performance vs. Louisville and 26 point debut at Madison Square Garden vs. Michigan State are two performances Wildcat fans will always remember.
“This year getting to rep Kentucky across my chest was everything I could have imagined,” Maxey said. “I got to play for a Hall of Famer, be pushed every day by the best coaches in the country, compete alongside great teammates and work with a support staff that is the gold standard – just like Coach Cal promised.
“Even though I didn’t get a chance to compete for my ultimate goal, this season was everything I signed up for. I know I’m a better player and man for embracing the challenge of playing for Kentucky.
“It’s time for my next challenge though. My dream has always been to play in the NBA and I know I’m prepared for this because I’m Wildcat made.
“Thank you to the Big Blue Nation, my coaches, teammates and everyone who has played a part in making this an incredible year. I will always bleed blue.”
John Calipari took a moment Monday to discuss Maxey’s decision to enter the NBA Draft.
“There was no player I was harder on this year than Tyrese, and there’s a reason for that,” UK head coach John Calipari sad. “One, he’s a great kid with a confidence in his ability that does not waver. Two, he has a potential that he has only begun to realize. And three, Tyrese needed to be challenged to take that next step.
“Tyrese made that leap this season. He met every challenge and became one of the best guards in the country. Not only was it his dream to play at Kentucky, he wanted to be coached. He’s going to do great in that league because there’s nothing he can’t do. He can handle the ball, he can shoot, he’s got great athleticism and he really defended as the season went on. In a lot of ways, he reminds me of what Jamal Murray was able to do and we know how well he’s done in the NBA.
“I’m so happy for Tyrese and his family.”