While technically they heard two names — TyTy Washington and Shaedon Sharpe — called in the first round, it was really just Washington Jr. that fans were able to forge a relationship with.
With Oscar Tshiebwe opting to return to Lexington, the Cats were left with really just the freshman phenom to cheer on. Washington dropped to pick No. 29, being selected by the Houston Rockets.
Just like Tyrese Maxey from a few seasons ago, Washington, once dubbed a lottery pick or even top-five selection, fell outside the top-15 picks. Teams will likely regret passing on the talented young freshman.
As for Sharpe, he was taken seventh overall to the Portland Trail Blazers. They’ll expect him to have a similar presence as CJ McCollum did next to Damian Lillard, and given his potential as a scorer, there’s hope he can fill that void the star guard left in Portland.
Next season, with Kentucky set to bring in two 5-star recruits, they’ll likely have several more names called in the draft. Let’s dive into how analysts feel the 2023 draft will go for several Cats.
- Cason Wallace No. 14 to the Orlando Magic
- Chris Livingston No. 24 to the Brooklyn Nets
- Oscar Tshiebwe No. 41 to the New York Knicks
- Daimion Collins No. 43 to the Philadelphia 76ers
- Cason Wallace No. 9 to Charlotte Hornets
- Cason Wallace No. 11
- Daimion Collins No. 28
- Cason Wallace No. 17
Sahvir Wheeler is returning to Kentucky for his senior year and that means Wallace will be playing more off the ball, similar to TyTy Washington’s role this past season. Washington (No. 29 pick in this year’s draft) struggled at times adjusting to the wing, and Wallace might have the same growing pains early on. He’s a little bit taller than Washington and NBA scouts are reminded year after year that former Kentucky guards can flourish at the NBA level.
- Chris Livingston No. 19
Livingston already has a mature frame for his young age and uses it to his advantage in his back-to-the-basket game just outside the block. He loves the turnaround jumper when the defender is on his right shoulder. A true worker who will need to adjust to half-court set offensives at Kentucky, but will really shine in transition and iso situations.
- Cason Wallace No. 11
Watching Cason Wallace play, it’s easy to fall in love with his bulldog energy and constant desire to drive into traffic and invite contact. His fearlessness means he’ll occasionally get into trouble when doesn’t get a call or forces a tough shot, but his ability to constantly break down a defense is exactly what you want from a point guard who will be in a good situation at Kentucky to demonstrate those abilities.
- Chris Livingston No. 24
- Daimion Collins No. 34