The Orlando Magic chose Kentucky's Jarred Vanderbilt in the second round with the 41st overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft in New York on Thursday night, and then they traded him to the Denver Nuggets.
Earlier in the night, Kentucky's Kevin Knox was drafted ninth overall by the New York Knicks. The Charlotte Hornets followed soon after by drafting Shai Gilgeous-Alexander at No. 11, and then traded him to the Los Angeles Clippers.
“I’m beyond excited to see my dreams come true," Vanderbilt said. "This is a blessing that my family and I will never forget. Now the real work begins. I’m looking forward to getting to work with the Nuggets. I couldn’t have ended up in a better spot.”
A 6-foot-9, 214-pound forward from Houston, Vanderbilt played in 14 games and averaged 5.9 points, 7.9 rebounds and 1.0 assist in his lone season at UK.
Vanderbilt missed the first two and a half months of the season because of a left foot injury. He debuted during conference play in January, but another left foot injury in practice before the Southeastern Conference Tournament forced him to miss the rest of the season.
"Everyone saw the difference he makes in a basketball game," Coach John Calipari said afterward of Vanderbilt's short time on the court for Kentucky. "The analytics people in the NBA went nuts (for him). And that's why, when he talked to us, and we talked it through ... go for it kid. ...
"I wish I could have coached him longer, but ... it's got to be about these kids."