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April 18, 2012

For Lamb, NBA move is a family decision

Brigitte Grant knows best.

At least she has up to this point. Doron Lamb's mother has guided her son in nearly every important decision in the 20-year-old's life.

She was the one that pushed him toward Oak Hill Academy in Virginia. Grant wanted her son to play for John Calipari at UK. She didn't want her son entering the NBA Draft after just one season and strongly recommended he return for his sophomore year.

And now Grant believes it's in her son's best interest to forgo his collegiate eligibility and enter the NBA.

Lamb's not arguing. On Tuesday, he joined UK teammates Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Terrence Jones and Marquis Teague in leaving UK for the NBA.

"My mom always make choices for me and every time they turn out good," Lamb said. "She wanted me to go to Oak Hill and that turned out good, she wanted me to come here and that turned out good, I had a great two years and she told me to come back (last season) and she told me to leave (this year)."

The best percentage three-point shooter in UK history has no reason not to trust his mom, and he's always believed what she has told him.

"She said it was best for our family and myself," Lamb said. "She said I'm ready for the next level, I had a great time, went to a Final Four and won a national championship, so you can't do better than that."

But leaving UK doesn't mean Lamb is detaching himself from the university. His mom wants him to leave college, but only from a basketball perspective.

"She told me I have to finish school," Lamb said. "I'll come back to this school, do what I have to do to finish school. I'll show love to the BBN, I will go to games and do a lot of good things for this state."

Lamb averaged 13.7 points per game this season and will leave UK shooting 47.5 percent from behind the arc. Perhaps his best game will be his last, when Lamb helped UK defeat Kansas in the national championship.

Lamb hit three three-pointers and led all scorers with 22 points. It wasn't long after that performance that he made up his mind he was ready for a new challenge.

And in his final game, he made sure to take time to savor the final moments playing with his teammates one last time.

"It was after the game (I made my decision)," Lamb said. "I knew it would be our last game playing for each other. I didn't know who would leave. I knew someone would, someone had to leave."

The other four members of the starting five came to the same conclusion as Lamb, and decided it was time to move on.

"We had a hell of a year this year, winning the whole thing and only losing two games," Lamb said. "That's hard to do."

Leaving might end up being harder for Lamb, but with the support of his family, teammates and coaches, he'll take on the NBA while never forgetting the last two years of his life.

"I'll stay connected forever," Lamb said. "I'll never turn my back on Kentucky. They got me to the NBA and if it wasn't for this program I wouldn't be where I am today. I'll be active in this state."




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