Would he, or wouldn’t he? Kyle Guy talks NBA decision


kyle guyA reporter asked Kyle Guy what the reporter conceded was a “shitty question.” If UVA had not won the national title in April, would he have returned for his senior year?

“Maybe,” Guy finally conceded, after audibly agonizing over his words, a rare moment for the glib sharpshooter from Indianapolis, the 2019 Final Four Most Outstanding Player.

It had been widely expected that teammates De’Andre Hunter and Ty Jerome would declare for the 2019 NBA Draft, and both ended up being selected in the first round.

Guy was a question mark. Most mock drafts had him completely off the board, so it was a bit of a surprise both when he declared for the draft, and then decided to stay in the draft pool ahead of the deadline to return to school.

The Sacramento Kings called Guy’s name in the second round, and he heads to training camp with the Kings later this month off a nice turn with the franchise’s Summer League team with a chance to make the main roster.

Either way, he has no regrets.

“What I wanted to do was accomplish everything I could here. I felt like I did that,” said Guy, a two-time first-team All-ACC selection at UVA.

“I love Coach Bennett. I wasn’t going to average 30 here,” Guy said. “Naismith Player of the Year, maybe that’s the only thing I could have won. But, you know, I’m not going to put up numbers like that. Because, number one, I’m not going to put up enough shots to do that. That’s just not my nature. I try to be a selfless team guy, whatever it takes to win.”

He paused, again, struggling for words, trying to be diplomatic.

“But, I don’t know. There’s a lot of what-ifs.”

His performance in the Summer League suggests that Guy made the right choice. For the summer, Guy averaged 14.9 points and 2.6 assists per game, shooting 37.8 percent from the floor and 34.6 percent from three-point range.

Now, his focus is on getting ready for the start of his first NBA training camp.

“I’m playing open gym right now with the guys, and obviously the talent level is through the roof,” Guy said. “All these guys are so good, even guys that don’t even play. They are so good, so gifted, so talented. You’ve got to find a new way to find with a new brotherhood.”

About the opportunity to play one more year for Dear Old UVA …

“To play for Coach Bennett one more year would have been awesome. But at the end of the day, I felt that I made the right choice. I couldn’t be happier for the position that I’m in,” Guy said.

Story by Chris Graham



uva basketball team of destiny

Team of Destiny: Inside UVA Basketball's improbable run

Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25.

The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018, and how coach Tony Bennett and his team used that loss as the source of strength, through to the ACC regular-season championship, the run to the Final Four, and the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.

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