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Game Thoughts from Kentucky’s 73 – 69 win over Vermont

Game Thoughts from Kentucky's 73 - 69 win over Vermont
Photo Credit: Brendon D. Miller
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Game Thoughts from Kentucky's 73 - 69 win over Vermont

Photo Credit: Brendon D. Miller

Andre’ Chapman | Andre’ Chapman

The Young Kentucky Wildcats had to wait for the final seconds of the game to secure a 73-69 victory over a veteran led Vermont team in front of a Sunday afternoon Rupp Arena crowd of 20,174.  The Wildcats (2-0) were led by freshman forward PJ Washington with 17 points, 10 rebounds and 2 assists.  The  Catamounts (0-1) hit 10 threes and were led by senior guard Trae Bell-Haynes with 16 points 5 assists.  Below are some of my observations of the game.

Quade Green should be the starting PG. –

Solid performance from Quade.  He’s just a heady tough nosed guard who made great decisions with the basketball today.  He finished with 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists.  He just needs to figure out how to catch his defense up to his offense to stay on the floor longer.

Huge win for the Young Cats.

The Vermont Catamounts are a NCAA Tournament team.  They won 29 games last season and swept their league.  For the Young Wildcats to win this game against a team returning everyone from last years tournament team, says great things about this teams character in the future.  This game will prepare them for Kansas Tuesday night in Chicago at the United Center.

Sacha Killeya-Jones

I love what I saw from Killeya Jones today.  He didn’t finish with great stats, but I saw great effort out of him.  He has a chance to be a 2-3 zone buster displaying the nice soft touch from the top of the key.

Kevin Knox Struggles

Although Knox hit a much needed three in a late game situation, he continues to struggle with his outside shot 3-10 from the field.  Calipari going forward, should work on calling plays for Kevin to post more to take advantage of higher percentage shots.  Once Knox sees a few go in, I believe this will help him with his confidence from long distance.  He still almost finished with a double double. 11 points 8 rebounds.

PJ Washington & Diallo

Diallo and PJ combined for 33 points on 13-27 shooting.  PJ was a beast.  He has the ability to post up smaller defenders and go around bigger guys trying to guard him on the outside.  Diallo is starting to come into his own.  Not only do you see the athleticism everyone talks about, Diallo also is showing he has the will to win.  He’s capable of being a great rebounding guard if he puts his mind to it.

Prediction:

Up next for these Young Cats are the number 4th ranked Kansas Jayhawks, Tuesday November 14, 2017 in Chicago at the United Center.   Right now Kentucky is not the 5th ranked team in the nation.  Preseason rankings are really predictions of what writers think a team will be at the end of the season.  Since it’s still early and this team will not look the same come March, I believe they will take their first loss of the season against the Kansas Jayhawks this coming Tuesday.  We will see.

 

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