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3 former Wildcats on the move as FIBA World Cup practice starts up

Two Canadians out, one American in for the Wildcats.

NBA: Sacramento Kings at Denver Nuggets Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Ahead of the FIBA World Cup, several Kentucky Wildcats are on the move.

We already knew Heat center Bam Adebayo was making the Team USA roster and Knicks forward Julius Randle was dropping out, but we also learned that Kings guard De’Aaron Fox will likely be playing for Team USA.

Yahoo!’s Chris B. Haynes was the first to report the news on the 21-year-old.

Fox took a huge leap in his second season in the league. Averaging 17.3 points per game, many are starting to think Fox could be the league’s best point guard in just a few seasons, one reason he was promoted to Team USA roster.

Fox will be playing alongside fellow teammate Harrison Barnes and former Wildcat teammate Adebayo. However, while this Wildcat is playing for his country, the other two on the move are impacting the team north of the border.

According to The Star’s Doug Smith, former Wildcat Jamal Murray and fellow Canadian and No. 3 overall selection R.J. Barrett will not play in the World Cup.

“Of the 29 players publicly invited by Canada Basketball last month, fewer than half actually showed up at the Raptors’ training facility for the first workout. And of those 14, two — R.J. Barrett and Jamal Murray — were making ceremonial appearances only since they’ve already been ruled out of the World Cup in China from Aug. 31 to Sept. 15 because of injuries.”

For Murray, not playing is due to a sprained ankle, yet his absence may also have something to do with keeping his body in pristine shape after signing a five-year, $170 million max extension. However, the reported reason is the sprained ankle.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, a former Wildcat and fellow Canadian, has also not reported to the Toronto facility and will likely not be playing for Team Canada.

That said, Team USA has already kicked off practice for the FIBA World Cup. Fans were even treated with a video of Fox, Adebayo, Jayson Tatum, and Jaylen Brown putting in the one-on-one work following the team’s first practice.

Be sure to check back in for any announcements about your Wildcats on Team USA.