UK Men's Basketball

Another Kentucky basketball player to explore his NBA Draft prospects

What has EJ Montgomery learned from his teammates?

Kentucky basketball's EJ Montgomery talks about learning from his teammates and how he hopes to progress. The 6-foot-10 freshman scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds in UK's win over North Dakota on Nov. 14, 2018.
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Kentucky basketball's EJ Montgomery talks about learning from his teammates and how he hopes to progress. The 6-foot-10 freshman scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds in UK's win over North Dakota on Nov. 14, 2018.

Kentucky freshman forward EJ Montgomery announced Friday morning that he plans to test the NBA waters by entering his name for the draft.

“I have sat down with Coach Cal and my family and decided to take full advantage of the rules that are in place and enter my name in the draft process,” Montgomery posted on his Instagram account. “My goal is to be a first-rounder. If the information I receive supports that, my plan is to stay in the draft and pursue my dreams of playing in the NBA. Thank you BBN for your love and support through this important time in my life.”

Montgomery becomes the fourth Kentucky underclassman this season to announce his decision to enter the draft. He has until May 29 to make a final decision as to whether to stay in or return to Kentucky. New rules allow Montgomery to sign with an NCAA certified agent to help him with his decision.

Tyler Herro and Keldon Johnson also announced decisions earlier this month to “test the waters,” but subsequently in recent days have announced they will stay in the draft regardless and not return to UK.

Montgomery, a 6-10 forward from Fort Pierce, Fla., made 10 starts and played in all 37 games for the Cats, averaging 3.8 points and 4.1 rebounds per game. By putting his name in, Montgomery can submit paperwork to receive NBA evaluations and participate in the NBA Draft Combine if invited.

“EJ improved so much during the year,” head coach John Calipari said in a UK press release. “He helped us win games and made a difference in so many other games. I think it is smart for him and his family to explore what his options truly are. I have no doubt in mind that EJ has a bright future. Whether the information says EJ should stay in the draft or come back for another year to prepare for the rest of his life, I’ll support his decision.”

As of Friday afternoon, Montgomery was not among the top-100 prospects on either the ESPN.com or the CBSSports.com 2019 best available player rankings.

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