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Monday Quickies: Kenny Payne Edition

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What a blow this would be for John Calipari and the entire UK basketball program.

Jason Marcum - Sea of Blue

On Saturday afternoon, former Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau accepted a five-year offer to become the new head coach of the New York Knicks. Per Kentucky Sports Radio, the Knicks have not yet officially contacted Payne but the franchise is considering the longtime Kentucky assistant as an option to join Thibodeau’s staff.

It’s no secret that Payne holds strong relationships not just with current recruits and players but former players as well. The Knicks ironically have two former Wildcats on their roster and are committed to both Julius Randle and Kevin Knox for at least the next three years.

Payne could also be a significant piece in attracting current NBA stars on other teams such as Anthony Davis, Devin Booker and Karl-Anthony Towns who could hit the market soon.

Losing Payne would be a devastating blow to the entire Kentucky basketball program. He’s viewed as one of the best assistant coaches in the country and head coach John Calipari clearly values Payne as a priceless asset.

In the world of COVID-19, a decision to make Payne an offer could take longer than usual (if the Knicks do at all). With New York being one of the teams left out of bubble play, they’ll have plenty of time to focus on their new staff.

Tweet of the Day

I think we’re all here for Josh Allen’s recognition, but this seems like a slight overreaction.

Quickies

Big Board 1.0 for the 2020 NBA Draft - Kentucky Sports Radio

Only two Cats make the board.

Tom Payne Addresses Rupp’s Legacy, Moving Forward and Not Back - YourSportsEdge

Interesting perspective on recent discussions regarding Rupp Arena.

The State of Kentucky’s 2021 Football Recruiting Class - Kentucky Sports Radio

Lots of good prospects on this list.

Ohtani fails to record an out in return to mound for Angels - ESPN

Couldn’t have been much worse for the young star.

Payne being considered for Knicks assistant coaching position - Kentucky Sports Radio

Would Kentucky’s top assistant leave for the Big Apple?

Astros star Justin Verlander shut down with forearm injury - USA Today

Not ideal for a shortened season.

NFL players who attend ‘high-risk’ events and get COVID face discipline, lack of pay - ESPN

Quite the list of regulations listed in the memo.

Giants to release kicker after misdemeanor charges in alleged hit-and-run - USA Today

Could Stephen Gostowski become their replacement?