Sahvir Wheeler expected to be available Saturday against Tennessee


Kentucky Wildcats guard Sahvir Wheeler (2) drives into the paint during the UK vs. Central Michigan men’s basketball game on Monday, Nov. 29, 2021, at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky. UK won 85-57. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Hunter Shelton

Barring a setback in practice, Kentucky head coach John Calipari expects starting point guard Sahvir Wheeler to be available against Tennessee on Saturday.  

“[Wheeler] did practice yesterday,” Calipari said to the media on Friday. “My guess is, unless something happens today in practice, he’ll be available tomorrow.” 

The Wildcats have been without their main PG the last two games against Georgia and Vanderbilt, as he has been recovering from a “neck injury” sustained against LSU after running into a screen early in the first half.  

Despite the loss of Wheeler, Kentucky reigned victorious against both the Bulldogs and Commodores, looking comfortable without the guidance of its floor general.  

Thanks to a single-game assist record set by TyTy Washington Jr against Georgia and improved shooting by graduate student Davion Mintz, Wheeler’s absence hasn’t seemed as severe.  

Calipari noted that Washington has benefited from taking over the PG duties, citing that it has “made him more aggressive.” Calipari went on to highlight the performances put out by Mintz in the last twoSEC games. 

“What about Davion? Davion has played out of his mind,” Calipari said. “If there is one guy late in the game that I would say I’m really comfortable with shooting the ball, it would be him.”  

While Washington has been nothing short of a dime-dropper in the point guard role, he still trails Wheeler in the assist column by 26. Wheeler currently ranks third in the nation in assists, averaging 7.3 per game.  

If Wheeler is able to return to action, it will be a welcomed sight to Big Blue NationThe Cats will need all hands on deck as they battle the No. 22 Tennessee Volunteers on Saturday, Jan. 15 at 1 p.m. E.T.