John Calipari Rumors
Q. Who’s tougher on you, Thibs or Cal? Karl-Anthony Towns: Haha. Ahhhh … I’ma say Cal. Cal was very hard on me. Thibs is hard on me, but Cal was otherworldly hard on me. It was definitely something I enjoyed, funny enough. I was always able to take the criticism. I was always able to talk to him. They both have love for me.
Heeding the advice of John Calipari, Hamidou Diallo did not participate in any 5-on-5 drills or even pick up a basketball at the combine. But he did show off his vertical — 44.5 inches — which was the second-highest in combine history behind former Memphis star D.J. Stephens. “They don’t know (how you play). Well, don’t show them,” Calipari said. “They all like you without watching you. Good. The more you don’t play, the more they like you, the more they’re impressed.”
He joined Kentucky midway through last season and decided against playing. “If someone takes him in the lottery I will retire,” Calipari said. “Four months, doesn’t play, lottery pick, I’m done. I’m stopping.” Calipari said that before Diallo jumped out of the gym. He may have to renege.
Diallo, a highly recruited swingman from Queens, didn’t play a single game for the University of Kentucky after enrolling there in January. And this week he did not compete in 5-on-5 play at the N.B.A.’s draft combine here. So why does his stock appear to be on the rise ahead of next month’s draft? The master of the one-and-done, Coach John Calipari of Kentucky, thinks he understands the thinking. “They don’t know,” he said. “Well, don’t show them. They all like you without watching you. Good. The more you don’t play, the more they like you, the more they’re impressed.” “If someone takes him in the lottery I will retire. Four months, doesn’t play, lottery pick, I’m done. I’m stopping,” he said.
“It was mostly my choice,” Diallo said of sitting out. “Just coming into a season with a team that has some chemistry flowing, a team that’s been together a whole summer and a semester, just coming in and trying to input myself right away wouldn’t be right for me and wouldn’t be right for those guys.” “It maybe could’ve worked, or it maybe couldn’t have worked,” he added. “So it would’ve been a really tough decision. It could’ve put me in a bad spot or it could’ve put the team in a bad spot, so we just thought that ultimately the best thing for me to do was to sit out.”
Marcus Camby received his UMass Amherst degree Friday—24 years after he began taking classes at the university. And his former Minutemen basketball coach, John Calipari, was on hand to celebrate with him.