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Kentucky Basketball Recruiting: What the experts are saying about Tyrese Maxey

Will Tyrese Maxey stay in 2019? What would he bring to UK?

Decision day is here for Tyrese Maxey.

The five-star point guard in the Class of 2019 is set to make his college decision today, and the Kentucky Wildcats are widely expected to be the pick.

Ranked 13th overall by 247 Sports Composite, Maxey has the potential to be the latest five-star guard to thrive under John Calipari. Whenever Maxey lands in college, he’ll have the talent to be a first-round pick in the ensuing NBA Draft.

The question is, which class will Maxey be part of?

Up until last week, it looked like a done deal that Maxey would be in Lexington next season.

But since then, the buzz has grown that Maxey will remain in the 2018 class.

Ahead of his decision, Corey Evans of told the Herald-Leader that he believes Maxey remains in the 2019 class.

“I think he stays ’19 for now, honestly,” Evans said. “Could it happen where he jumps to 2018 this summer? I think so. He has to get all the academics in order for it to happen. And more prodding from Calipari and those guys — or wherever he goes — could force the issue. But I think he remains in ’19 for now.”

As Evans said, it’s possible that Maxey eventually decides to reclass later this summer, and there’s a reason why that scenario may be in play.

The Peach Jam is the premier AAU event, something guys like Maxey would love to win before their high school careers end. If he reclasses now, he can’t compete in the Peach Jam, which is why this will still be something to monitor going into the summer.

KSR’s TJ Walker made the case for Maxey moving into 2018 or staying in 2019. For UK, it may actually be better for Maxey to stay in 2019 and help recruit other elite recruits to join him. It also could help avoid rubbing other UK guards the wrong way this season.

When Would UK Really Need Him?: Having Maxey in 2018-2019 would be an abundance of riches for Calipari and UK, but would the Cats be better served being patient and using Maxey for the 2019-2020 season? Maxey would join D.J. Jeffries as 2019 commitments and would continue to put the full-court press on James Wiseman. Plus, having Maxey in the ears of Vernon Carey and other elite 2019 players will only help. Maxey and Jeffries could start a super class that could result in two great seasons for UK.

Making Other Guards Unhappy: Tyler Herro had a quote saying the Cats had plenty of guards when Ashton Hagans committed and mentioned reclassifying. If the Cats added Hagans and Maxey would that rub Green, Quickley, Herro or Baker the wrong way? Could it disrupt chemistry? It only takes one player to be truly unhappy to cause locker room drama. UK will want to avoid that at all costs.

Many wonder how Maxey would fit on the current roster with all the other point guards set to be in Lexington next season, including Quade Green, Ashton Hagans and Immanuel Quickley. Even Daniels thinks Maxey would fit in just fine.

“Very different,” Daniels told SEC Country. “Tyrese is a true combo guard. You can play him on the ball, you can play him off, he can guard both positions. But the main thing is he can really score it. Now, I’m not saying he can’t pass, but he can really score. Whereas, with Hagans, I think he needs the ball in his hands to be as effective as he can be, because he’s a true facilitator, set-up man, who can really distribute and pass.

“Like Maxey, [Hagans] can guard multiple positions on the floor, so there would be a lot of defensive versatility if they were playing together.”

Eric Bossi of offered up his assessment of what Maxey brings to the table for his college team:

“Whether he arrives early or with his current class, Maxey has the tools to be a difference-maker,” said Bossi. “He’s a pure jump shooter from deep, creates well for himself and others off the dribble and is a physically strong and tough kid who should be able to handle the physicality of college whether he arrives on campus here in a month or two or in another year.”

One thing is for sure: UK is getting a special player in whatever class he’s part of.

Be sure to read our roundtable on what Maxey would bring to the table for UK.