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Tuesday / February 21.

Kidd-Gilchrist Talks National Team, UK Alumni Game

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Just a few years ago, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was starring on the basketball court at Elizabeth (N.J.) St. Patrick High School.

Now he’s a former NCAA champion, an NBA player and a member of the USA National Team’s mini-camp.

“It was a brotherhood [at Kentucky],” Kidd-Gilchrist told reporters in Lexington Wednesday, according to Kyle Tucker. “In the NBA, it’s just different. It’s grown men. I’m growing up fast.”

Kidd-Gilchrist participated in the recent USA Basketball mini-camp, alongside former Kentucky players John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis.

“It was a humbling feeling that I was even there,” Kidd-Gilchrist said. “I was surprised I made the minicamp team. Hoping I make the team.”

The Charlotte Bobcats forward is also learning from being around team owner Michael Jordan.

“I see him every day so now it’s like whatever, but when I first got there, I was shocked,” he said.

He added: “He taught me a lot. I talk to him like every week.”

As for the immediate future, Kidd-Gilchrist will participate on Sept. 9 in the 2013 UK Alumni Charity Game at Rupp Arena, which is expected to feature the Class of 2010 against the Class of 2012.

Kidd-Gilchrist will play for the 2012 national championship team, which also featured Davis.  Davis and Kidd-Gilchrist were the 1-2 picks in the NBA Draft that year.

The 2010 team lost in the Elite Eight and starred Wall, Cousins and Eric Bledsoe.

Davis has not committed to playing in the Alumni Game, but he and his New Orleans Pelicans will play an exhibition game against Wall and the Washington Wizards Oct. 19 at Rupp.

“It’s gonna be fun to give back to Lexington and the University of Kentucky,” Davis said. “Always great to come back.”

As for the Alumni Game, Cousins predicted the 2010 incarnation would win the game, but Kidd-Gilchrist begged to differ.

“Everybody knows,” he said.


Ticket information and additional game details will be released at a later date, Kentucky announced….As reported here earlier, Derrick Jones, a 2015 wing from Philadelphia, will visit Kentucky the weekend of the Alumni Game.

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.