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Kentucky Basketball: Rick Pitino Once Again Expresses Regret For Leaving UK

I never tire of hearing Rick Pitino lament the decision to leave Kentucky.

Yes, Rick, we appreciate hearing you say it.  We will never tire of it.
Yes, Rick, we appreciate hearing you say it. We will never tire of it.
Tyler Kaufman-US PRESSWIRE

Yeah, we’ve heard it before, but here it is again, and I just like to write about this stuff to remind our friends over at the University of Louisville who the big dog is around here (well, okay, big Cat). From Sports Radio Interviews:

Do you regret at all going to the pro’s?

"No. I loved going to the Knicks because we won the Atlantic Division championship. We went from winning 21 games or 19 games to winning 52 games in a short period of time. I loved coaching Patrick Ewing and Charles Oakley and all those guys. I think I do regret leaving Kentucky because I took over a team with 15 wins banking everything on the Tim Duncan lottery, and once we didn’t get Tim Duncan I realized that leaving Kentucky was not a good move."

As I said back in 2007, I never, ever get tired of hearing this. If Pitino wrote it in his own blood, every day for the rest of his life, I’d never get tired of reading it. There is no rational doubt he made the wrong move leaving UK, and had he stayed, I imagine UK would have, at minimum, caught UCLA by now. Make no mistake, the Pitino that left here was at the very pinnacle of his coaching powers, had the most powerful basketball program in America to play with, and had just missed winning 2 national titles in a row by an overtime.

For the record, the "I’m struggling in Louisville" thing is totally tongue-in-cheek. Pitino's happy where he is, and he'll retire as the Louisville coach, ancient regrets and all. By the way, I'm sure he doesn't regret coming to Louisville -- that was a good move for him -- he only regrets leaving Kentucky. He’s not struggling here any way except maybe to get up in the morning, and with the dicey weather in this city.

All of us who live here struggle with that. Hat tip: Nation of Blue.