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NBAdraftblog.com’s Ed Isaacson on potential for Marcus Lee, Dakari Johnson; team chemistry and how Andrew Wiggins would fit at UK

uk basketball logoBy LARRY VAUGHT

NBADraftblog.com’s Ed Isaacson correctly predicted that two of Kentucky’s freshmen (Archie Goodwin and Nerlens Noel) would put their name into the NBA draft and two (Willie Cauley-Stein and Alex Poythress) would return to UK for their sophomore seasons. Now he’s had a chance to watch Kentucky coach John Calipari’s next No. 1 recruiting class that includes six McDonald’s All-Americans and he offers his insights on those players and their futures.

Question: Which of Calipari’s newest players has the most work to do before he can reach the next level and which one perhaps has the most untapped potential?
Isaacson: “Marcus Lee has the most work to do, but you can see by the raw ability and athleticism why many are high on him. As for untapped potential, Lee is there, as well Dakari Johnson. Johnson has a lot of the physical tools you want, but he relies on the physical way too much right now. He has to put a lot of work into the skill part of his game.”

Question: Can all six of the McDonald’s All-American signees thrive on the same team?
Isaacson: “I don’t know if all six will ‘thrive,’ but in the best case scenario they all get better. The reality is there won’t be enough minutes for every one of the freshman to get exactly what they need to get better, but there will be enough for all to take some steps in the right direction.

Question: How good is Andrew Wiggins and could you see him fitting in well with the six UK commits if he decides to also sign with Kentucky?
Isaacson: “Wiggins is a very good player who still has plenty of room to keep getting better. I think Wiggins has the demeanor and attitude that he can fit in easily with whatever group of players surround him. If he heads to Kentucky, I would actually see him having few problems. He is versatile and can find ways to make an impact from a variety of spots on the floor.”

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3 comments

  1. Anonymous

    Love the “attitude” that both Johnson and Lee bring to the team. Frankly, I see Dakari really being a great help to WCS on a daily practice basis since his offensive skills are really good and hopefully Willie can pick up on those that fit his game the best. Once Lee gets additional strength and muscle, his length and quickness are going to be down right frightening…”don’t bring that stuff in here”! Should really be fun to watch it develop.

  2. Bryan

    I don’t understand why Ed Isaacson feels that the players can only improve by playing lots of minutes in-game [Question: Can all six of the McDonald’s All-American signees thrive on the same team?
    Isaacson: “I don’t know if all six will ‘thrive,’ but in the best case scenario they all get better. The reality is there won’t be enough minutes for every one of the freshman to get exactly what they need to get better, but there will be enough for all to take some steps in the right direction.].

    I believe that competing against each other is going to give each of them plenty of time and opportunity to improve individually.

  3. King Ghidora

    It’s going to be plumb fun to watch how the pieces fit together on this team. There is such a glut of talent already it may take some shaking out to figure out what the best lineup will be and whether that changes depending on the competition. What a set of tools to pick from though. WOW! That’s all I can say and I still hope Wiggins becomes part of the team. it will be very hard to lose to anyone except themselves in that scenario. Only a playing time controversy can hurt this team if Wiggins is there and I don’t think that’s real likely either.

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