After a breakout junior season, Kentucky forward Nick Richards is entering the NBA Draft.
Richards announced his declaration for the draft via Twitter this morning in a press release in which expressed how grateful he was to play for the Cats.
“Thanks to the best coaching staff in the country and my amazing teammates, I’ve continued to develop my game and improved each and every year,” Richards said. “I told you (the fans) then that I’ve had the time of my life suiting up for the best fans in the country and I stand by that.”
UK Head Coach John Calipari once again went to Twitter to support the decision of his players, this time in support of Richards, as he talked about the growth the big-man has had throughout his time at UK.
“Of all the kids that we’ve coached who have elevated and benefited from the culture we’ve built here, I would say @iamnickrichards (Nick Richards) is at the top of the list,” Calipari said. “Nick’s ability to self-evaluate and block out the clutter for the last three seasons has shown incredible maturity.”
After two seasons in which Richards struggled to find a rhythm on the court, the forward was a huge part in this past team’s success. Richards earned a spot on the 2019-20 All-SEC First Team and 2019-20 All-SEC First Defensive Team as he finished the season averaging 14.0 PPG, 7.8 RPG and shooting 64.4% from the field. Defensively, he averaged 2.1 blocks per game.
With Richards now for sure gone, UK sophomore forward EJ Montgomery’s decision becomes even larger.