Lottery prospect Julius Randle, Kentucky Wildcats to Final Four

Lottery prospect Julius Randle, Kentucky Wildcats to Final Four
Kentucky's Julius Randle celebrates the Wildcats' 75-72 victory over Michigan in the Midwest Regional final of the NCAA tournament. (Jonathan Daniel / Getty Images)

The Kentucky Wildcats (8th seed), Wisconsin Badgers (2nd), Florida Gators (1st) and Connecticut Huskies (7th) survived the weekend to advance to the NCAA's college basketball tournament's Final Four.

Kentucky's Julius Randle is the lone top lottery prospect left in play, after Aaron Gordon and the Arizona Wildcats fell to Wisconsin on Saturday.

Randle, a 19-year old, 6-foot-9 power forward, may have solidified as a top-four selection in June's NBA draft.

Other prospects at the top of the draft include Kansas' Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid, along with Duke's Jabari Parker. None advanced to the Elite Eight.

Randle, with a 16-point, 11-rebound effort Sunday to help take out Michigan (2nd), may have locked up a higher position than Oklahoma State's Marcus Smart, Australia's Dante Exum and Arizona's Gordon.

Gordon gave a glimpse of his strengths in defeat, collecting 18 rebounds, but showed his lack of a refined offensive game (eight points on three-of-11 shooting).

Though Randle isn't as strong a defender as Gordon, he's a consistent double-double for Kentucky and a ferocious scorer.

The Lakers are currently 25-48, tied with the Sacramento Kings for the sixth-worst record in the league.

The NBA's lottery on May 20 will determine draft order. The Lakers will have a shot at a top-three pick but may also fall back from six or seven to as low as nine or 10.

Kentucky center Willie Cauley-Stein didn't play Sunday with an ankle injury, but he could crack the lottery.

Michigan State's Gary Harris also made a strong final impression with 22 points in a loss to Connecticut.

Other top-10 prospects might include Doug McDermott (Creighton), Noah Vonleh (Indiana), Tyler Ennis (Syracuse), Gary Harris (Michigan State), Dario Saric (Croatia), Nik Stauskas (Michigan), Clint Capela (Switzerland), Jusuf Nurkic (Bosnia) and UCLA's Kyle Anderson.

Wisconsin junior Frank Kaminsky had a huge night on Saturday against Arizona, scoring 28 points with 11 rebounds, but it's unclear if he'll declare for the draft.


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