UK announced the news in a press release on Tuesday, and it looks like Skal is now effectively gone after one promising but ultimately disappointing year in Lexington. Skal offered the following remarks via the press release:
"I want to thank my family, my coaches, teammates and most importantly I want to thank God for the opportunity that he gave me to represent and play for the University of Kentucky," Labissiere said. "I also want to thank the fans for their support through everything this season. I am excited to announce that I am entering the 2016 NBA Draft."
The native of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, played in all 36 games with 18 starts for UK this past season, but averaged just 6.6 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. He's projected to be a first-round pick in this year's NBA draft, and it's hard to pass on the chance to become a millionaire.
Here is what head coach John Calipari had to say of Skal staying in the draft:
"I couldn’t be more proud of a player and the way Skal handled himself on our campus this season,"Calipari said. "He was a great student, a great teammate and I’m so proud of the way he handled himself in the community. He is one of the greatest kids I’ve ever coached.
"On the basketball court, it took him and our staff a while to figure out how to best utilize him, but his improvement on that court over the year is why he is in this position to put his name in the draft and be projected in the middle of the lottery. His future is out ahead of him and I think in time he will be in the same breath as all of our big guys who have performed well in the NBA."
While his play on the court left a lot to be desired, Skal was an amazing person off the court and as nice of a human being as you'll ever meet. You can't help but root for him to have a succesful and happy life going forward, even though it may be hard to see that happening in the NBA.
Whatever happens, best wishes to Skal going forward. Hopefully we'll see him back in Lexington many times in the near future.