Ex-Cats

Kevin Knox’s dad praises Calipari’s grooming of son for NBA

Kentucky forward Kevin Knox (5) dribbled around South Carolina forward Justin Minaya (10) during their game Jan. 16 in Columbia, S.C. Knox’s father said in a recent interview that his son wasn’t ready to consistently make plays off the dribble before he got to UK.
Kentucky forward Kevin Knox (5) dribbled around South Carolina forward Justin Minaya (10) during their game Jan. 16 in Columbia, S.C. Knox’s father said in a recent interview that his son wasn’t ready to consistently make plays off the dribble before he got to UK. AP

Kevin Knox Sr. said his son didn’t get the chance to show some of the things he could do on the floor at Kentucky that he displayed in his breakout performance during the NBA Summer League this month. But, he added, it was the lessons Knox Jr. learned under Coach John Calipari that got him ready for his star turn.

“I don’t think at Kentucky he was quite ready to be at the top the whole time, but Cal continued to work with him in the process and got Kevin ready for the NBA,” Knox Sr. told the New York Post’s Marc Berman in a story published online Thursday. “When he got to Kentucky, he wasn’t ready to be the iso guy. I was happy with his development (with the Wildcats) but happy to pass the baton to (Knicks) Coach (David) Fizdale and continue that process.’’

The 18-year-old was selected as the No. 9 overall pick by the New York Knicks, drawing some boos from fans gathered on NBA Draft night. But Knox quieted his doubters by averaging 21.3 points, earning first-team summer league honors and delivering some spectacular dunk highlights.

The Knicks allowed Knox the opportunity to bring the ball up court and initiate the offense.

“The biggest surprise was the ability to create with the ball in his hands and get his own shot,’’ Knox Sr. said of how Knox turned heads in Las Vegas. “He didn’t get the opportunity to see that in Kentucky as much. He was more astute with the ball, making decisions. He created off the dribble and got his shot off like Kevin Durant whom he patterns his game after.’’

Read the whole Knox Sr. story here.

Photos of Kevin Knox from the 2017-2018 Kentucky basketball season. Music: www.bensound.com

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