The Kentucky Wildcats are getting set to face the Duke Blue Devils, and it remains to be seen if CJ Fredrick will be able to go Tuesday night in the Big Apple.
Fredrick, who transferred in from Iowa this past offseason, is still working his way back from offseason leg surgery, which led to him not fully practicing or playing in UK’s exhibition games.
Thankfully, Fredrick finally returned to practice this past weekend, according to head coach John Calipari.
“He (Fredrick) practiced Saturday a little bit and Sunday a little bit,” Calipari said at his Monday press conference. “He’s practicing today a little bit. My guess is I may throw him in a minute or two, let him run up and down, but this probably isn’t that game.”
Back at Iowa, Fredrick redshirted his first year and then started immediately as a freshman during the 2019-20 season, averaging 10.2 points on 48.3% shooting (46.1% from deep), 1.9 rebounds, and 2.8 assists vs. 1.3 turnovers in 28.7 minutes per game.
Last season, Fredrick averaged 7.5 points on 47.4% shooting from the field and from three-point range with 1.9 assists vs. 0.4 turnovers in 24.7 minutes per game. While his numbers regressed, part of that was due to a lower leg injury suffered in early January, which would cost him four games and limit his playing time to below 20 minutes in six other games the rest of the way. He reached doubles figures just twice over his final 17 games.
When healthy, Fredrick is one of the best shooters in college basketball. Unfortunately, we should not expect to see much, if any of him in Tuesday’s Champions Classic game vs. Duke, but at least he’s practicing now, which means he should be back up to speed fairly soon and make his UK debut.