Michael Kidd-Gilchrist discusses possible return to UK



Michael Kidd-Gilchrist discussed the possibility of returning to UK for a sophomore season following UK’s win over Vanderbilt.

“I’m graduating here. I’m not going nowhere. I’m staying at Kentucky,” Kidd-Gilchrist said, according to Brett Dawson of Rivals.com. “I’m dead serious. I don’t know why y’all laughing.”

Full disclosure: I wasn’t there when Kidd-Gilchrist said this, so I can’t clue in on context or intonation.

But those words, just by themselves, are pretty strong.

But how serious can we take this? Plenty of players projected to go high in the NBA Draft say they will or want to return for another year. It’s an especially easy statement to make now, in the middle of February, when you’re caught up in having a great season with a great team. It becomes a little harder when it’s time to actually make a decision, when the path to the league of your dreams is laid out right before you.

Usually, I view players saying this kind of thing with severe skepticism. Not because I don’t believe in the sincerity of their feelings. I’m sure most players who say this feel exactly how they say they do — at that given time. I only reserve belief because so much can change. Typically, those changes lead to a change in the decision.

But Kidd-Gilchrist is different. A different personality, a different player. Does that mean he has different priorities, when it comes to his decision to stay or go at the end of this season?

We’ll have to see. Some (notably, Jared Sullinger) end up coming back after saying they will. Some don’t.

I still say wait until it’s official before putting too much stock in it. But with Kidd-Gilchrist, it’s an easier leap to believing it will come true.

Sooner, rather than later, Kidd-Gilchrist will be faced with the actual decision. And then we will see what he decides.

(UPDATE: A little Twitter action brought some more information on this. CBSSports.com’s Jeff Goodman started tweeting about how he is skeptical of Kidd-Gilchrist’s comments and cited the influence of World Wide Wes — Kidd-Gilchrist’s uncle — as a reason the freshman will likely go pro. “He’ll likely do whatever Worldwide Wes tells him to do,” Goodman tweeted, among other comments. Kidd-Gilchrist’s mother responded directly at Goodman with this: “The fact is Michael has parents that make decisions for him. I know because I’m his mother.”)

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