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John Calipari likes his roster, but does Kentucky basketball need to add another transfer?

John Calipari likes his roster, but does Kentucky basketball need to add another transfer?

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LEXINGTON — With the passage of the NBA draft early entry and transfer portal deadlines, the Kentucky basketball 2022-23 roster has started to stabilize.

5 returning scholarship players are verified for upcoming year, as are four additions to the team. Two scholarship gamers have transferred, and an additional has declared strategies to remain in the NBA draft. Of the three Wildcats testing the NBA draft waters whilst preserving their faculty eligibility, only junior ahead Jacob Toppin is anticipated back.

But is the roster completed?

“I like this roster,” Kentucky coach John Calipari explained past 7 days in an visual appearance on SportsTalk with Dan Issel and Mike Pratt. “Jacob is going as a result of the system. I imagine he’ll be back, but we’ll have to wait around and see. But I think he’ll be again.

“With Daimion (Collins), with Lance (Ware), with Oscar (Tshiebwe), with our guards, with Chris (Livingston), with Cason (Wallace), with C.J. (Fredrick), Antonio (Reeves) and then Sahvir (Wheeler), I indicate, come on. I’m like stating, let us go, let’s perform the online games.”

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Calipari predicted subsequent season’s staff will have 9 or 10 scholarship gamers even though leaving open the chance of adding an 11th. Following the determination of a few-star Pennsylvania prep guard Adou Thiero, UK’s roster is at 9 scholarship players. A return from Toppin delivers the complete to 10.

Calipari has seldom utilised all 13 scholarships allotted him by NCAA rules, so there is no cause to expect him to do so now. But could he add an 11th player? Right here are two locations of worry one more addition could help tackle:

3-level shooting

UK's Sahvir Wheeler (2) shoots a jumper during practice ahead of their NCAA Tournament match up against Saint Peter's at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, In. on Mar. 16, 2022.

UK’s Sahvir Wheeler (2) shoots a jumper in the course of apply forward of their NCAA Tournament match up in opposition to Saint Peter’s at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, In. on Mar. 16, 2022.

Kentucky lost its leading three 3-point shooters from past season with the departures of Kellan Grady, Davion Mintz and TyTy Washington.

A healthful Fredrick, who missed all of very last time with a hamstring injury right after transferring from Iowa, must assist replace that trio. Fredrick shot 46.6% from 3-place variety (83 for 178) in two seasons at Iowa and can be deemed just one of the greatest shooters in the region when on the court docket. The concern is how lots of minutes he can be predicted to perform right after the long harm layoff and previous damage troubles at Iowa.

Reeves, a transfer from Illinois Condition, shot 39% (76 for 195) from 3-stage vary final time following capturing 31% during his 1st two college or university seasons. He would present another shooter if these enhancements stick.

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Wallace and Livingston, the two consensus major-10-rated freshmen joining the roster, are regarded as able shooters, but background suggests it would be smart to think there will be regularity problems with their shots as freshmen. One particular of the two figures to be on the court docket at most instances, as will Wheeler, the SEC’s two-time assists chief but a 27.5% profession 3-place shooter.

Until Calipari is willing to participate in Fredrick and Reeves together for extensive stretches, ground spacing may possibly be a problem. Including another transfer guard who is a powerful shooter would at minimum present insurance policy if Fredrick’s minutes are confined.


Calipari has created no solution he thinks his very best groups have featured principal rotations no further than 8 players. Maintaining talented scholarship players pleased who are not viewing regular minutes has constantly been tough but has grown even more so due to the fact the adoption of the just one-time totally free transfer rule.

For those causes, it is easy to understand that Calipari has not focused on filling out his 13 out there scholarships, but what transpires if the damage troubles that plagued Kentucky a yr ago return? With no another addition, the remedy may perhaps be pray that does not occur.

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Of course, it should be mentioned Kentucky’s 2012 nationwide championship staff was not particularly deep. An personal injury to Anthony Davis that yr would have sunk that staff in the very same way an harm to Tshiebwe would likely destroy Kentucky’s likelihood of creating a deep NCAA Tournament run next yr. There is a certain quantity of injury luck essential to earn big.

Email Jon Hale at [email protected] Adhere to him on Twitter at @JonHale_CJ.

This posting at first appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: Kentucky basketball roster: 3-position capturing issue for 2022-23