British basketball: John Calipari reacts to Ashton Hagans announcing he will remain in the NBA draft

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Ashton Hagans is officially on leave for the NBA, as the Kentucky Wildcats point guard said on Sunday for the 2020 NBA Draft.

It was the wait from the start, and Hagans made it clear in his announcement that he was not testing the waters but that he was instead in this year’s draft class, even if he didn’t is not clear when the recovery will be due to COVID-19. wipe out sports.

After the announcement, head coach John Calipari issued a statement on Hagans’ decision to become a pro.

“Ashton is ready for this,” said Calipari. “Where he was when he got here two seasons ago where he is now is not even close. He’s a completely different player and he built his skills and confidence to take the next step.

“We know what Ashton can do to change the game defensively and how much he has improved offensively, but what will separate him is his competitiveness. This kid is a winner. His competitive spirit drives him and that’s why I love him. If I’m going to fight, I’ll take Ashton.

“I wish we could have had the opportunity to pursue his championship goals this season, but I’m so proud of who became Ashton. I am happy for him and his family and I will be behind them all the way. ”

The press release also said that Hagans will remain in the project, so there will be no speculation that Hagans may return to school before the project withdrawal deadline in May.

Hagans has appeared in 67 career games for the United Kingdom with 59 starts. After starting his career as a reserve, the Georgia native made an unforgettable defensive performance against North Carolina in December 2018, breaking the school record in one game with eight interceptions. He then scored twice in 13 of the last 26 games to end his first year.

Last season, Hagans scored 20 double digits, including a career-high 26 points in a win over Utah Valley. He has three or more assists in every game he played this season and has recorded five or more assists in 22 games, including a 12 game draw against UAB. His streak of 10 games with six or more assists in the middle of the season has been a Wildcat’s best race since Roger Harden’s six points in 12 straight games in 1986.

With 351 assists, Hagans ranks 12th in the history of the assists program. His career average of 5.24 assists in fourth place in the school’s record books. Hagans’ average number of assistants this season ranked 16th in the country and first in the SEC.

Hagans was named SEC co-defensive player of the year in 2019 and was again the UK’s best defender of the ball this season with 58 flights. He was part of the SEC All-Defensive team last season and was one of four finalists for Naismith’s national defensive player of the year.

With 119 career interceptions in 67 career games, Hagans has averaged 1,776 career interceptions per game. This rate is the third in all history in the history of the program, behind Rajon Rondo and Derek Anderson.

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