Boogie Fland has right mentality to flourish at Kentucky

Published 4:00 pm Thursday, November 16, 2023

Rivals.com national basketball recruiting writer Krysten Peek, who is also an NBA draft analyst for YahooSports, has seen Kentucky signee Boogie Fland play a lot.

The 6-2 five-star point guard was a recruiting priority for coach John Calipari. He averaged 15 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game in 17 Nike EYBL games last summer.

Peek got to watch him at a USA Basketball camp this fall and liked everything she saw.

“He is a great kid off the court, but he was amazing on the court at USA Basketball,” Fland said. “He was the top performer there and played really well in front of a lot of NBA scouts. He proved why he is a five-star point guard and was not bothered at all playing in front of all those NBA scouts.

Peek talked to Bland about what he wanted to show NBA scouts at USA Basketball and said he gave her one of the best answers she’s ever heard from a high school player.

“A lot of times, I get improved shooting mechanics and an impressive motor. But he had the most insightful answer I have ever heard,” Peek said. “He told me that when you get to the NBA, you are not going to be the one shooting. That will be the veteran players. He said he wanted to show how good he was at the little things. For a 17-year-old kid to have that much insight really shows maturity.”

Peek knows Fland wants to play in the NBA and is projected as a future NBA player. However, she was surprised when he told her Calipari did not stress all the players he’s put into the NBA during his recruitment.

“He said Calipari talked more about how everybody was not built to be a guard at Kentucky and that they said they would do all the could to make him the best player possible and ready for the NBA, but if you were not built for, don’t come to Kentucky,” Peek said. “I just figured Cal showed guys a Rolodex full of guys he got to the NBA but apparently not. I know Indiana thought they had him but Kentucky’s track record with point guards is just hard to overlook.”

Peek likes the improvement she’s seen from Fland with his touch around the rim.

“He has the right mentality. At 6-2, he’s a smaller guard, but he is so fast with the ball in his hands,” Peek said. “He seems to always make the right reads. He will make the extra pass. He has a more polished game than last year, when he relied more on athleticism and just throwing his body around to score. He’s got more finesse now rather than just forcing things against bigger, stronger players. He knows he has to find a way to adjust his game to succeed at Kentucky and I think he will do great.”

Peek is also a Jasper Johnson fan. The former Woodford County standout has transferred to Link Academy in Missouri for his junior season and was also at the USA Basketball event, where Peek got to see him in person for the first time. The 6-5 guard is a five-star, top-15 player in the 2025 recruiting class.

“That USA camp was stacked with top players and a lot were just out to get their own (points),” Peek said. “Playing at Link has already helped Jasper. He is learning to play off the ball on offense and defense.

“Not being a true point guard, and that is going away in the NBA, he needs to be comfortable on and off the ball and I think he is now from what I saw. He wasn’t forcing anything. He waited for the right moment to make things happen. He wasn’t just driving and shooting. He was patient in what he chose to do with the touches he got and he was very patient with his game.”