Friday, November 14, 2014
Cats Bury Grand Canyon 85-45 Game Review (Twitter Version)
The first half saw much of what you will see most of the season. Kentucky finishing at the rim at will, outscoring the Lopes 26-6 in the paint while accumulating 15 second chance points compared to 4 for Grand Canyon thanks to their 13 offensive rebounds before halftime.
The most impressive player to watch in the first half had to be Willie Cauley-Stein. I've never seen a big man run the floor with ease the WCS does and then to still have the ability and agility to finish at the rim, well, it's just impressive to watch. He's going to be a match-up nightmare for anyone who steps on the floor with him this season. He can literally guard all five positions.
Here's what some of sports talking heads thought of UK's first half performance on Twitter...
Jeff Goodman: Didn't take long for Tyler Ulis to make his presence felt on defensive end. Love that kid.
Kyler Tucker: Andrew Harrison's per-34 rating looking real solid so far tonight.
Larry Vaught: Second unit definitely picks up the pace with Ulis running the show
Ben Roberts: Both Harrison twins and Alex Poythress standing up on the bench, cheering for Platoon 2 during that entire possession.
Jeff Goodman: Trey Lyles drills a 3. Super-skilled.
Larry Vaught: Lyles puts in another 3-pointer. For guy his size, incredible shooter from 3 and free-throw line
Matt Jones: Huge difference from last season...Andrew Harrison does a ton of "coaching"/encouraging his teammates while he is on the sideline
Kyle Tucker: Marcus Lee offensive board and slam makes the ninth Wildcat to score already.
Darrell Bird: Yes, it's only Grand Canyon but both platoons seem to run Cal's offense very efficiently. No thinking, just moving.
Larry Vaught: If Alex Poythress works boards like that and gets follow shots, UK goes to whole new level
Larry Vaught: Nasty. Andrew drive and left-handed lob to Willie for dunk
HALFTIME SCORE WAS 43-16
The second half saw a slow start from the platoon made up of Ulis, Lyles, Johnson, Booker and Lee. So slow in-fact that it led to a very quick hook from Calipari in favor of the starting five. Neither "platoon" showed much aggression throughout the second half and one has got to believe it was because of the opponent and the size of the lead which they maintained throughout the entire game. But, they will have to learn to keep the intensity, especially against a good team whether they have a big lead or not.
For a little rundown of stats, Kentucky finished the game shooting 49% from the floor while shooting a dreadful 21% from three. They won the rebounding battle by convincing fashion 51-21 which included an impressive 24 on the offensive end. Speaking of offensive rebounds, the Cats also had 29 second chance points while tallying 58 points in the paint. Kentucky's bench outscored Grand Canyon's by a score of 33-11.
If you had to pick an area where this team needs to improve as a whole, it would be concentration and aggression for forty-minutes. Other than that, there wasn't much to complain about.
Your leading scorer for the game was Andrew Harrison with 16, followed by Trey Lyles who had 14. The only double-double of the night for the Cats came at the hands of Dakari Johnson who had 10 points and 13 rebounds (his first career double-double which is hard to believe) and who was probably the MVP for the Cats on this night.
Here's what Twitter thought of the second half of tonights game...
Eric Crawford: Commentators keep saying, "Can Calipari massage those egos?" Granted, I don't know those guys well, but I don't see all these massive egos.
Jerry Tipton: Form holds. UK second platoon starts second half.
Brett Dawson: Cats go with platoon 2 to start the second half.
Brett Dawson: Calipari a little ahead of schedule putting the first platoon back in.
Jeff Drummond: Calipari has deviated from straight platoons here early in 2nd half. Starters came back a minute early, now Dakari Johnson replacing Towns.
Kyle Tucker: Dakari Johnson in for Towns with Platoon 1. Well ... now Towns about to check back in.
Ben Roberts: Trey Lyles has attempted 3 three-pointers and another jumper with his feet on the line. Made 2 of those. 6-10 dude has the green light.
Jeff Drummond: Trey Lyles second Cat in double figures with 11 now #BBN
Jeff Goodman: Love him. Lottery pick. RT @GottliebShow: Trey Lyles would play a lot more than half a game on my team - dude is so skilled
Larry Vaught: Maybe just me or maybe opponent, but Andrew looks so much quicker going to basket
Brett Dawson: Dakari Johnson has a double-double with 10 points, 12 rebounds (8 offensive)
Matt Jones: From my money, Dakari Johnson is the MVP tonight
Ben Roberts: No UK Platoon player played more than 23 minutes tonight. No Platoon player played fewer than 14 minutes.
Ben Roberts: Seven UK players took 7plus FG attempts tonight. No UK players took more than 10 FG attempts tonight.
In the end, this game gave us an idea where the Cats stand as far as competing against D-1 talent. Sure it was just Grand Canyon, but it's still a D-1 school with a little talent and some size. I for one CANNOT wait until the Kansas game. Win or lose, at least you will know what this team is made of.
Tune in this Sunday at noon on ESPNU to watch the Cats take on Buffalo in their final tune-up before their first big game of the season in Kansas next Tuesday night.