Finally, thankfully — you never thought it would happen — Adam Silver and his glorious shaved dome will step to the microphone at the Barclays Center on Thursday night, and the 2015 NBA Draft will begin.
But wait, you heard it here first: five predictions.
1. The 2016 NBA rookie of the year will be D'Angelo Russell.
The Louisville native and one-and-done Ohio State Buckeye has the key ingredients needed to succeed from his opening professional tip.
Russell is a playmaker in a league that now caters to playmakers. He's 6-foot-5. He's athletic. He shot a head-turning 41.1 percent from the three-point line last season.
And in this age of position-less basketball — where have we heard that before? — Russell can play the 1, the 2 or even the 3. Better still, he knows how to play basketball. Right now.
2. Five years from now, the best 2015 NBA Draft pick will be Karl-Anthony Towns
There's a reason Towns will hear his name called first when the Minnesota Timberwolves turn in their card Thursday night.
The 6-foot-11 center is a terrific offensive player with great instincts. He can pass, shoot, post up. He made 80 percent of his free throws. (Sorry, Jahlil "51 percent" Okafor.) Towns was a little foul-prone at UK, but maturity should fix that. And once he sheds his baby fat, watch out.
Towns is this draft's true difference-maker.
3. The ex-Cat most likely to be overrated is Willie Cauley-Stein.
Nothing personal. We love Trill. He's fun, interesting and probably the player we'd most like to invite to dinner. And Cauley-Stein figures to be a good pro.
Strength: We've seen with our own eyes that he can guard pretty much any position on the floor.
Weakness: He needs to develop an offensive game. Quickly. In three years as a Cat, Cauley-Stein didn't reveal many moves around the basket. He might have them. We just didn't see them.
One more worry: In the biggest game of the year, that Final Four loss to Wisconsin, Willie wasn't much of a factor.
4. The ex-Cat whom GMs will eventually wish they had picked when they had the chance is Trey Lyles.
People forget this about the 6-foot-10 forward out of Indianapolis. Lyles got a late start in 2014. He sat out UK's summer trip to the Bahamas. He was nagged by little injuries for most of the year. He was on a team that didn't really require him to do everything he can do.
And Lyles can do a lot. He can score, rebound, block shots if needed. The older he gets, the better Treymamba41 will get. Bank on it.
5. All seven Kentucky players will be drafted
Towns will go No. 1. Cauley-Stein will go somewhere around No. 10. Lyles will go in the 15 range. Devin Booker, a shooter at a time when the league has fallen in love with shooters, might even go before Lyles. There's your first round.
Look for Andrew Harrison, his stock helped via his workouts, to go early second round. Dakari Johnson lugged a few too many pounds to the NBA Combine, he's hops-challenged and he needs to get stronger, but his 7-foot frame should put him in the middle of the second round.
And it says here that an NBA GM will remember that string of buzzer-beaters in the 2014 NCAA Tournament and tab Aaron Harrison late in the second round.
Then John Calipari will pronounce it the greatest day in the history of the universe. Or something like that.