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Former Kentucky standouts set to compete in NBA Summer League at Las Vegas

Kentucky coach John Calipari will be watching many of his former players, including Isaiah Briscoe, compete in the NBA Summer League that began Friday and concludes July 17 in Las Vegas. (Kentucky Today/Tammie Brown)

By Keith Taylor
Kentucky Today

Kentucky will be well represented in the growing NBA Summer League this year as 14 former Wildcats will take part in the event that began today and concludes on July 17 at the Thomas & Mack Center and Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas.

For the first time, all 30 teams in the league will compete in the league that will feature 82 games in 12 days, which the finale set for July 17. Each team will play at least five games, while those advancing could compete in as many as eight contests.

Kentucky coach John Calipari took some of his former players to dinner Thursday night and will be on hand for the opening weekend of league play.

“I’m watching 13 summer league games in the next two days,” Calipari said in a tweet. “(Saw) about 12-13 (former players) at dinner (Thursday night). Looking forward to seeing all of our guys. I’m excited to see everyone and have them tell me I held them back and subbed them on every missed shot! Oh, and that I yelled? Really?”

Malik Monk (Charlotte), Alex Poythress (Indiana), Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (Los Angeles Clippers), Bam Adebayo (Miami), Derek Willis (New Orleans), Kevin Knox (New York), Hamidou Diallo (Oklahoma City), Dakari Johnson (Oklahoma City), Isaiah Briscoe (Orlando), Archie Goodwin (Portland), De’Aaron Fox (Sacramento), Wenyen Gabriel (Sacramento), Marquis Teague (Toronto) and Aaron Harrison (Washington) are among the 14 former Kentucky players who will play in the league.

Adebayo (Heat), De’Aaron Fox (Kings) and Gabriel (Kings) played in a four-team league in Sacramento earlier this week. Goodwin needs just 18 points to become the all-time leading scorer in the Las Vegas Summer League.

A total of 10 games were set to be played Friday in Las Vegas.

Calipari also gave his current team the weekend off for the July Fourth holiday. The Wildcats are preparing for a summer trip to the Bahamas Aug. 6-13.

“I let our current guys go home for the weekend to spend some great time with their families,” he said. “Most of our guys have been on campus for a month and have been great.”

Keith Taylor is sports editor for Kentucky Today. Reach him at keith.taylor@kentuckytoday.com or twitter @keithtaylor21.

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