The Kentucky Wildcats ended their six game Big Blue Bahamas exhibition series on Sunday with a 5-1 record.
The Cats played six games in eight days, which is unheard of even in NBA play. The Cats played the equivalent of two SEC tournaments albeit with two days off in between. However, some nineteen years ago in 1995, the Untouchables played a series of five games in seven days overseas in Italy. The championship team, like this year’s squad, lost one of their games and left Italy with a 4-1 record.
This year’s squad features a total of nine McDonald’s All-Americans, returning just about every All-American from last season with the exceptions of James Young and Julius Randle. The Cats, who finished as the runner-up in the NCAA Tournament, are going to really want it this season.
One veteran NBA scout was impressed, according to Zags Blog.
“They are loaded,” the scout said of Kentucky. “It will be hard not to see them playing in the [NCAA] championship game in April of 2015. Their second five may be better than most of the teams they have on their schedule.”
The same scout believes that Karl Anthony-Towns may very well be the number 1 overall pick in next year’s NBA Draft.
“Towns has a chance to go No. 1 but not out of the top five,” the NBA scout said. “Poythress has gotten better but he’s still a 4 more than a 3. The twins are better but not lottery picks. Ulis is a nice college guard. Booker is a prospect in a few years.”
It needs to be noted that this year’s team played the six exhibition games without two of their big men: Trey Lyles and Willie Cauley-Stein. It begs the question of whether or not the point differential would be so low for the second set of three games played over the last week. Do the Cats win on Sunday if neither player were sitting out? Maybe but we’ll never know.
No matter the result, the Cats have been impressive to watch over the last week. August basketball has never been more welcome and now we’re just about two months away from Big Blue Madness.