A Kentucky backcourt of BJ Boston and Daishen Nix in 2020-21? The five-star guards say it's possible
While dozens of elite prospects poured into John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, VA this week for the NBPA Top 100 Camp, two names consistently mentioned at or near the top of the list of top performers at the event are 2020 five-star guards BJ Boston and Daishen Nix.
Teammates this week, it was evident from day one that the two had phenomenal chemistry on the court. With Nix being a pass-first point guard – arguably the best in the nation, at that – and Boston being a dynamic scorer, the two were obviously a perfect match in the four-day event.
As we approach the final day of camp, their complementary play on the floor has led them to believe that not only have they been solid teammates in Charlottesville, they could be an even better duo at the next level.
“Our chemistry is developing really good, he’s a pass-first point guard,” Boston said on Thursday afternoon. “I really like that when I’m playing. We connected from the time we first stepped on the court together this week.”
“We’ve got really good chemistry,” Nix added. “He’s a really cool guy, he’s down to earth. He’s really funny too, that’s what a lot of people don’t know about him.”
For Boston, things are a bit easy when it comes to his recruitment. Already down to four schools – Kentucky, Duke, Florida, and Auburn – all he has left to do is choose one of them.
“I think these are the four schools that are on me the hardest right now that want me at their university,” he said. “[During travel ball this summer,] they’re telling me to out every game, play hard, and go as hard as I can.”
As of right now, Kentucky leads all schools in Boston’s Crystal Ball over at 247Sports with 83% of all predictions, including picks from recruiting analysts Jerry Meyer and Andrew Slater.
As for Nix, things are a bit more complicated.
He already holds offers from big-name programs such as Kansas, Arizona, UCLA, and Gonzaga, while Maryland, Alabama, LSU, Memphis, and Washington are also seen as possible contenders. While Boston’s list is shrinking, Nix’s list is growing larger.
One of the schools the nation’s No. 1 point guard is hoping to officially add to that long, growing list? The University of Kentucky.
Though no offer has officially been extended, UK assistant Joel Justus visited Nix at his high school in Las Vegas, NV on May 2. When asked about the meeting, the five-star point guard said having a coach from Kentucky reach out just stands out among some of the other visits he has had.
“It was a surprise because Kentucky walked in,” the five-star prospect said. “It was just like some of the other visits, but they were just higher than the other coaches that have come in so far.”
Nix took it a step further by saying that while he loved his interaction with Justus, he’s hoping to catch up with Kentucky head coach John Calipari, a “legend” in his eyes, sooner rather than later.
“I really want to meet Coach Cal [in person],” Nix said. “Because growing up, watching all the top schools, they were my dream schools. It was pretty good that I got to finally talk to him. … It’ll be a shock [when I meet him] because he’s a great coach. He’s a legend to me.”
And how would he feel if Calipari offered him a scholarship during that face-to-face meeting?
“It would mean a lot, because not a lot of people where I’m from get offers like that,” Nix said. “Like Kentucky growing up, Kansas growing up, schools like that, those were the schools you watched on TV.”
Switching back to Boston, the 6-foot-6 shooting guard also had rave reviews for Kentucky.
“They’re all family-oriented the way they coach their program,” Boston said Thursday evening.
When asked about his recent visit to Lexington in February, the five-star prospect said he was fascinated with what he saw at Rupp Arena.
“It was a good atmosphere, it was like an NBA arena,” Boston said. “They played Auburn. Good, high intensity.”
Between Thursday and Friday, at least one representative from the University of Kentucky watched the elite guards take the floor in all four games. In those matchups, Boston averaged 14.3 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game, while Nix has averaged 4.3 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 3.0 assists per contest to go with an impressive 23.0 player efficiency average.
Back in 2013, former Kentucky guards Tyler Ulis and Devin Booker teamed up for the first time at the NBA Top 100 Camp. In several interviews afterward, the former dynamic Wildcat duo said that was where their chemistry both on and off the floor first developed. That was when they first decided they wanted to play in college together.
When asked about the potential comparison, both Nix and Boston said the idea of that was definitely intriguing.
“Yeah, it’d definitely be something like that,” Nix said of the comparison. “I can be like Tyler Ulis, pass it to him. I’m a pass-first point guard, so I would make sure he scores. That’s what he wants.”
“It’s up to him, I don’t know where I want to go right now. I probably won’t be making my decision until later,” the elite shooting guard said. “But for me, I need a passer to join me where I decide to go to school.”
For Nix, he’d be happy with being that passer Boston is looking for.
“He’s a scorer, he can score from wherever he wants, get wherever he wants on the floor,” he said. “And I like that. If I get him the ball, he can do his thing.”
But will it actually happen?
“Hopefully,” Nix said. “I’m not sure yet, but hopefully.”