By SAM LANCE & ADAM ZAGORIA Kentucky freshman guard D.J. Wagner left Tuesday’s home game against Miami with what head coach John Calipari later told reporters was an ankle injury. No. 12 Kentucky won the game over No. 8 Miami, 95-73, in the ACC/SEC Challenge.
Wagner — the former five-star recruit from Camden High School (NJ) and the reigning SEC Freshman of the Week — limped off the court and was taken to the locker room with 3:50 to play in the first half. He was spotted on the exercise bike before Kentucky announced he would not return to the game. Wagner has averaged 14.5 points, 3.7 assists and 2.2 rebounds in six games for the Wildcats this season. Another freshman guard, Reed Sheppard, took Wagner’s spot in the starting lineup coming out of the halftime break and poured in a game-high 21 points with 5 rebounds and 4 assists. BRADSHAW EXPECTED BACK SOON Aaron Bradshaw, Wagner’s former Camden teammate, is expected back soon after missing the start of the season following foot surgery. He participated in shoot-around and warm-ups on Tuesday. Calipari told reporters that Bradshaw could return either this Saturday against UNC Wilmington or Dec. 9 against Penn at Wells Fargo Center.
Calipari said he didn’t see DJ Wagner but he was told an ankle issue. “He wasn’t going to come back” tonight. No further elaboration.— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) November 29, 2023
Former Villanova guard Maalik Wayns, who coached Bradshaw and Wagner at Camden High, believes Bradshaw can make an impact right away — and certainly on the defensive end. “They’re going to come in and really want to guard and stuff like that,” he said last January of Bradshaw and Wagner. “That’s the biggest adjustment for young guys in college, is just being able to guard and being able to compete every night and play that hard every night. These kids already do that. Their calling cards is playing hard and playing defense. I think when you add that with their talent, I think the sky’s the limit for them in their time at Kentucky.” Follow Sam Lance on Twitter Follow Adam Zagoria on Twitter Follow ZAGSBLOGHoops on Instagram And Like ZAGS on Facebook
Aaron Bradshaw is going through a complete pregame warmup routine— Jack Pilgrim (@JackPilgrimKSR) November 28, 2023
And looks really good. pic.twitter.com/mTRYrSgQmi