LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari woke up in the wee hours in Egypt, where he is coaching USA Basketball’s under-19 World Cup team, to respond to an ESPN report that he’s reached out to the New York Knicks about becoming their president.
“NO ONE has contacted the Knicks on my behalf,” Calipari tweeted at 11:02 p.m. Eastern Time (but 5:02 a.m. in Cairo, Egypt.) “I am the coach at Kentucky and will be for a long time!”
He has plenty of reasons to remain at Kentucky, including a contract that pays him about $8 million a year through 2024, another No. 1 recruiting class coming to Kentucky for the 2017-18 season and potential for a super team with the Wildcats the following year.
Alas, it wouldn’t be an offseason without Calipari-to-the-NBA rumors, as reliable a summertime tradition as sunburns and cookouts.
“Even in Egypt I can’t escape the rumors,” Calipari tweeted. “Are you kidding me?! It’s 5 in the morning here and this is what I wake up to?”
His USA team has rolled in two exhibitions — with Kentucky freshmen Hamidou Diallo and P.J. Washington combining for 63 points — ahead of the FIBA World Cup, which begins on Saturday. First, a little fun for Calipari and Co.
“Off to see the pyramids in a bit,” the coach wrote in the last piece of his three-tweet burst. “And by the way, I like my team. And my @usabasketball team too!”
Even in Egypt I can’t escape the rumors. Are you kidding me?! It’s 5 in the morning here and this is what I wake up to?
— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) June 30, 2017