Skal Labissiere, the number 2 ranked player in his class, McDonalds All-American, 6’11 with a jumper and can defend, headed to Kentucky (aka NBA U) to play under NBA top 5 pick generator Coach Cal…looks like we have another one and done top pick on our hands ladies and gentleman. Than we have 6.2 ppg, 2.8 reb, 15.8 min, 49% from the field and 3.8 fouls a game Skal Labissiere. Wait, what?! Yep, that’s right these two players are one in the same, only the former has shown up way more than the latter this season. Now, this year’s Kentucky team wasn’t expected to be nearly as dominant as last years and it would have been unfair to think that, however one Skal Labissiere was expected to somewhat resemble what Kentucky fans saw in Karl Anthony-Towns last year.
The unfortunate truth is that Labissiere has looked anything but his predecessor and has seemed to even lose the confidence he once showed to even come close to it. Seeing what Anthony-Towns is doing in the NBA now, maybe comparisons were a little unfair to begin with, but the Kentucky faithful expected more than a player averaging more fouls than rebounds from their prized recruit of 2015. Coach Cal himself recently made headlines saying he may have “screwed up” Labissiere by having him play inside more and has removed him from the starting lineup in part due to his and the teams slow starts. Coach Cal referenced Labissiere’s NBA future as well with this quote from Kentucky.com “Stay in the moment. You can’t put on yourself, ‘Well, I have to be a pro in four months.’ It may not be possible. It may take you two years.”
Labissiere, for the record doesn’t agree with his coach in the sense that he has “screwed him up” and has shown some improvement over the past few games. It’s highly likely that Labissire leaves for the NBA after this year and it’s possible he may still end up as a lottery pick based off of sheer potential and talent as well, however it seems the chances people will once again wonder if he will challenge freshman sensations Ben Simmons from LSU and Duke’s Brandon Ingram for the title of top player in the draft are, shall we say, “screwed”.