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Five Kentucky players declare for NBA

April 7, 2010 at 8:54 PM

LEXINGTON, Ky., April 7 (UPI) -- Five University of Kentucky players with eligibility remaining have declared themselves available for the NBA draft, Coach Jim Calipari says.

Calipari said in a release Wednesday that freshmen John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Bledsoe and Daniel Orton and junior Patrick Patterson will declare for the professional draft, the Louisville (Ky.) Courier-Journal reported.

The newspaper said Caliperi's statement indicated that despite their decisions to leave school he remained "proud of these five young men, with everything they did for us on the court and the way they represented us off of it."

Analysts have rated all five of the players as top prospects in the June draft, with Wall ranked as the No. 1 college prospect in the nation. He averaged 16.6 points, 4.3 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game and helped lead the Wildcats to the Elite Eight in this year's NCAA Tournament.

"It's extremely unusual for four freshmen from the same team to have this opportunity, but it's my job as a coach to prepare these young men for such opportunities," Calipari said.

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