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Cousins, Wall and two other former UK standouts returning to Rupp Arena for exhibition game

By Keith Taylor
KyForward senior sports writer

The NBA is coming back to Rupp Arena next season.

The Sacramento Kings and Washington Wizards will play an exhibition game at 7 p.m. on Oct. 15. Former Kentucky players DeMarcus Cousins, Rajon Rondo, Willie Cauley-Stein and John Wall will appear in the contest one day after Kentucky’s annual Big Blue Madness event.

 John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins will play in an NBA exhibition game at Rupp Arena on Oct. 15

John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins will play in an NBA exhibition game at Rupp Arena on Oct. 15

“This game will highlight an exciting weekend of basketball for Kentucky fans,” Global Sports Management Vice President Brian Breslin said in a release. “They can start off the weekend with Big Blue Madness on Friday and an NBA game on Saturday. We are excited about bringing another NBA preseason game to Lexington and the great fans of this area.”

Global Sports and the Bluegrass Sports Commission have teamed up to bring the past two NBA exhibition games to Lexington, including last year’s contest between the Kings and New Orleans Pelicans.

“We have had tremendous crowds the first two times we brought NBA basketball to Lexington and we are expecting the great fans of Kentucky to come out and show their support for these former Wildcat stars and these two up and coming NBA teams,” Breslin said.

Cousins said he’s excited about playing at Rupp Arena again.

“I am excited for the upcoming preseason game in Lexington vs. the Wizards,” he said. “Getting a chance to play at Rupp in front of the Kentucky fans is always a good feeling. Kentucky fans are the best fans in college and have supported me my entire career so it is great to come back and give them a show.”

Like Cousins, Wall is looking forward to the matchup against his former college teammate.

“I am excited to be returning to Lexington for our preseason game on Oct. 15,” said Wall, who was named recipient of the NBA Cares Community Assist Award on Wednesday. “Rupp Arena holds a special place in my heart and I look forward to playing in front of the best college basketball fans in the country.”

Cauley-Stein will be making his second straight appearance with the Kings.

“I’m thrilled to play in Lexington once again with my Kings teammates,” he said. “Last year we had a blast entertaining the Big Blue Nation crowd at Rupp Arena — home of many great memories for me.”

Tickets range in price from $10 to $250 and go on sale to the public on June 10 at 10 a.m. They can be purchased at the Rupp Arena box office, www.ticketmaster.com or www.RuppArena.com, or by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.

Keith Taylor is a senior sports writer for KyForward, where he primarily covers University of Kentucky sports. Reach him at keith.taylor@kyforward.com or @keithtaylor21 on Twitter

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