2016 NBA Draft Preview
NBA Draft night has always been an historic event for the Kentucky men's basketball program. Since John Calipari's arrival, the Wildcats have taken over draft night and are seemingly the story every year. Thursday, UK and Calipari will be showcased once again as the Wildcats have four-draft eligible prospects in 2016 in Skal Labissiere, Jamal Murray, Alex Poythress and Tyler Ulis.
Follow along with UKAthletics.com on Thursday for real-time updates, photos and reactions from Draft night in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Here's some notes and nuggets to get you ready:
- Kentucky has had 116 guys drafted 118 times (Johnny Cox ’58 and Roger Newman ’60 both drafted in Jr. eligible draft, but returned for senior year and were drafted again).
- UK has had 40 players selected in the opening round (19 have come in the last six years) of the draft.
- Kentucky has had 25 players selected in the draft over the last six years, more than double the next-closest school (Kansas).
- Kentucky has had 10 players selected in the top 10, 13 in the top 15 and 19 in the first round of the draft in the last six years.
Calipari Era Notes
- All 16 freshmen who have entered their names in the NBA Draft during John Calipari's tenure have been selected in the first round. Two more eligible this year in Jamal Murray and Skal Labissiere, who are both projected as first round picks.
- Since 2010, 16.7 percent (10 total picks) of all top 10 selections have come from Kentucky, far and away more than any other school.
- UK has had three record drafts over the last six drafts:
- In 2010, UK became the first school with five picks in the first round.
- In 2012, UK became the first school to have six players selected in a single draft. UK also became the first program in the history of the NBA to have teammates taken at No. 1 and No. 2.
- In 2015, UK matched its own record with six selections in a single draft.
- With four players taken in the NBA Draft Lottery in 2015 (Karl-Anthony Towns, Willie Cauley-Stein, Devin Booker and Trey Lyles), the Wildcats tied the record held by the 2005 North Carolina team with four lottery selections in a single draft since the lottery expanded to 14 selections in 2004.
- The Wildcats have had at least one player taken in the top seven of the draft in six consecutive seasons. Since the lottery began in 1985, only two teams have had more than one player taken in at least four consecutive drafts (Kentucky, 2010-15 and Kansas, 2012-15).
- Kentucky has had five pairs of teammates taken in the top 10 of the draft in the same year: (Sam Bowie - second, Melvin Turpin sixth in 1984; John Wall – first and DeMarcus Cousins fifth in 2010; Enes Kanter – third and Brandon Knight eighth in 2011; Anthony Davis – first and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist – second, Karl-Anthony Towns first and Willie Cauley-Stein sixth an in 2015).
- After never having a No. 1 draft pick in the history of its storied program prior to Calipari’s arrival, the Wildcats have had three selected in the last six years (John Wall, 2010, Anthony Davis 2012, Karl-Anthony Towns 2015).
- Calipari has had two or more players selected in eight consecutive NBA drafts dating back to 2008 with Memphis.
- Calipari has had four players taken No. 1 overall in his career (Derrick Rose, John Wall, Anthony Davis and Karl-Anthony Towns). He’s the only coach in the history of the NBA to have three or more players selected No. 1 overall.
- With Towns selected at No. 1 overall in 2015, Kentucky tied Duke for the most No. 1 overall picks in NBA history with three.
- With Towns going No. 1 overall, Calipari now has more No. 1 picks (4) than the entire Big 12 conference (3), Big East (2), American (2) and Pac 12 (1) since the beginning of the NBA Draft Lottery in 1985. Only the ACC (6) has more, while the Big 10 ties Calipari with four.
- In 23 seasons as a head coach, Calipari has coached 36 NBA Draft picks, including 25 first-round selections with 13 of those going in the top 10. He has had 25 selected in the last six years as UK’s head coach, including 19 coming in the opening round.