Kentucky's Anthony Davis says he hasn't decided on NBA yet
Kentucky freshman Anthony Davis clutches the NCAA trophy after the Wildcats won the national championship Monday night.
April 3rd, 2012
12:03 PM ET

Kentucky's Anthony Davis says he hasn't decided on NBA yet

John Calipari's Kentucky Wildcats are known as the "one-and-done" team because the squad's stellar young players are expected to go immediately from winning the NCAA National Championship into the NBA after one season.

But after Monday night's 69-57 win over Kansas, might Kentucky be a team that's one title down but not yet done? Is it possible that some players may surprise everyone and stick around for another season?

At a news conference after taking the national championship, the Wildcats were peppered with reporters' questions about the team's youth and whether their star athletes would say if they're ready to head to the big leagues. The team of big men and sharp shooters often has been compared to Michigan's famed Fab Five of the early '90s, who were all drafted in the first round of the NBA.

Anthony Davis has led Kentucky throughout the year. But Monday night, when he realized his shots weren't falling, he dominated on defense, racking up 16 rebounds, six blocked shots, five assists and three steals.

As the Naismith Player of the Year, Davis faced the most media inquiries about where he might be hitting the hardwood next year. One of the first questions was whether he was ready to come out for the NBA draft.

“No, I haven’t decided,” Davis said Monday night. “Coach (Calipari) says we have till April 29 to decide. I’m just going to wait till then, sit down with my coach, sit down with my family, see what the best decision is for me."

Davis is known as much for his tough play and dominating performances as his unibrow, which has become a rallying cry and point of pride for Kentucky fans. Ten best Davis unibrow tributes

It would be a big loss for Kentucky but a great gain for an NBA team, many analysts say, if Davis made the jump to the big leagues.

Calipari's style of recruiting high-caliber players with the goal of having them go off quickly to the NBA has received mixed reviews from college basketball fans. Calipari noted that he made history when five of his players were drafted in the first round two years ago. He said he knew after that draft that Kentucky would be a place where basketball players with big talent and dreams would go.

That's not to say Calipari didn't wish he'd have those players back next year. He joked about the NBA rule that a player must have one year of college ball before entering the draft.

"I don't think it's a good rule," Calipari said. "I hope we change it before this week's out so these guys have to come back. But it is a rule; it's not my rule - it's a rule we have to deal with."

The coach said he knows his young players, especially those only 18 or 19, have big talent.  And he said he had high hopes for this year's team.

"Let's have six, I'm fine with that," Calipari quipped about his expectations for Kentucky players taken in the first round of the NBA draft.

Davis wouldn't commit that he was ready for the NBA just yet. The press even tried to get a more definitive answer by asking him how he would describe Monday's game if it were his last as a college player.

It was like a ball fake Davis had seen before, and he handled the question the way he does defense: solidly.

“It’s a great way (to end the season), but like I said before - I’m going to wait until April 29 and decide what I’m going to do then," Davis said with a deadpan face.

Until a decision later this month, Calipari seems to be operating under the assumption that he will lose several guys and need to rebuild again. It is expected Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, Darius Miller and Marquis Teague will be drafted early.

If Calipari has his wish come true, they'll all be the first picks of several NBA teams in the first round.

And perhaps that's why Calipari knows he has a lot of work to do to prepare for next year.

"That's why I have to go recruiting on Friday," the coach said.

soundoff (104 Responses)
  1. Opal Monroe

    He's playin coy like were gonna believe he's gonna pass up a seven figure paycheck


    April 3, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Doug

    You might want to do some research before you write something in an article. The Fab 5 were not all drafted, let alone in the 1st round. Yes, Chris Webb, Juwan Howard, and Jalen Rose were all drafted in the first round. However, Jimmy King was drafted in the 2nd round and Ray Jackson wasn't drafted at all. A simple google search would have found that information for you.

    April 3, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • truthordare7


      I wish these players stay at least two years or three years even and have the option of skipping their final year. I believe it will be better for them in the long run as they will be more mature to the handle the stresses that come with fame and fortune. Just an opinion.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |

      What's even funnier is that Ray Jackons never played in the NBA. Yes he was picked up by the Knicks (not drafted) but was promptly cut in preseason only to have the same thing happen with Detroit. I would equate him to the NBA's version of a Ryan Leaf. 🙂

      April 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • hooch

      They might want to check the score of the game last night, too.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |

      HAHAHA! Dislexia, thy name is CNN!

      April 3, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Emmy Skaddittle

    I wouldn't cry too much for Kentucky, they will just reload with a new batch of the best freshmen in the country

    April 3, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  4. WilliamsJ32

    Really makes me raze my brow....

    April 3, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  5. detada

    Anthony Davis, you are a great player, but you are not ready for the NBA. Please, stay in school.

    April 3, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Johnny q

    It's Chris Webber not Chris Webb 😉

    April 3, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mr Dalloway

    He is soooo gorgeous!

    April 3, 2012 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Chuck

    I really think players should be 21 before they are allowed to play in the pros. Too much temptation for youngsters and I think the education would benefit them after the game is done with them.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Pickels

    If i were these guys i would go pro. But please make sure they have a good financial adviser because truck loads of money are going to be dropped on their laps. Congrats to them and their school.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  10. scott

    I saw that too...funny...a simple google search would of found that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 3, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. agentxyz

    It makes no financial sense to forgo the money, keep playing as an amateur, and chance an injury that will end a career before it begins.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Dirty Joe

    Such a sloppy article. It's almost as if Mallory Simon (the blogger that wrote the article) knows nothing about basketball at all. The Fab 5 weren't all drafted in the first round. Any simple web search will tell you that.

    I guess that's what you get when you have bloggers (instead of journalists) writing your articles. Good job CNN! Not.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |

    Uh, yeah, nice 'blog'...Darius Miller isn't going anywhere early...unless he decides to skip his graduation, he's a senior. Do a little fact checking before posting (notice I didn't say writing) something passing as journalism.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
  14. The all potent one

    Marquis Teague turns the ball over to much to get drafted early

    April 3, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Holdon McGroin

    He needs to strike while the iron is hot. Go to the NBA now and make your millions while you can. He would risk injury in college and possibly lose his shot at the NBA.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Retired Army


      Davis may take a couple years to 'grow' into an NBA power forward, but he'll make several million $$$$ (guaranteed, BTW) along the way.

      Having done pretty much all a college player can accomplish (except earn a degree) he now has the choice of -doing it all again - or - becoming a millionair.

      I mean.....he can ALWAYS go back to school.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • ComSenseWiz

      Any college player who is going to be drafted in the first round of the NBA draft would be a fool to remain in college. The money, disgusting as it is, is simple too large to pass up and especially so when it is unknown how long they will last in the NBA. In Davis' case, he already has a National Championship, the MOP of the NCAA tournament and the Player of the Year award. There is nothing left to prove at the college level. Time to bolt and he will.

      April 3, 2012 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
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