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Calipari says Dakari needs to be starting


After re-inserting Willie Cauley-Stein into the starting line-up for the last few games, John Calipari thinks it’s time to go back to Dakari Johnson. In his post-game interview with Tom Leach, Calipari applauded Johnson for his play and effort, also mentioning Alex Poythress as a key member of the second half comeback effort.

“Dakari needs to be starting, and that’s what we’ll do,” Calipari said. “He’s the one kid who has fun with it.”

Article written by Ally Tucker

I once successfully requested "The Wobble" to be played 6 times at one wedding.

33 responses to “Calipari says Dakari needs to be starting”

  1. jch67

    If by fun you mean consistently missing 1 footers, then, yeah, he must be having a blast out there!!

    1. tc

      He shot 3-4 from the field today, 3-4 against Alabama and 4-4 against SC. He is shooting 58% on the year and is UK’s second best post scorer. He missed some easy ones in one game, vs. Arkansas I believe. But that was just one game. The offense looks really good when Johnson gets a touch in the post and he needs to get more touches. You are criticizing the only player on this team who has played hard in every game. He is limited by his athleticism on defense but he’s almost always in the right spot and has been getting better all year on the defensive end. In short, you have no idea what you are talking about.

  2. KyMash

    This season has made me sad.

    1. Luther

      Me too!

    2. Carol

      Idiots much? Did they not see that WILLIE CAULEY STEIN was the one playing the BEST, and he was the one of the main ones that was in the game that helped start that run that Cal talked about so much. You know what? Coach Cal deserves to lose for this type of coaching.

  3. Brow

    I’m sitting here watching Harrell for uofl dunk on the entire uk team. How in the world is WCS projected higher than Harrell. Some idiot GM will get fired.

    1. Brow

      Uconn, dumb phone

    2. Ben

      I hate that Harrell is on UL, because that kid is fun to watch, and I hate watching UL. The Blake Griffin of college basketball.

  4. Chaz

    Willie’s athleticism has already staked out his draft status and I doubt the team is better when he’s palying. Playing more won’t raise his status, so why not give Dakari the PT? He could be be awesome next year and needs to come back.

    1. catsrus

      Did you hear the Dickie V comment about Willie Cauley Stein? “Cauley Stein teases you with occasional great play”. You just never can count on him.

  5. Whatever?

    yeah he misses shots,But at least the effort is there when he plays.They don’t have any shooters on this team.that cal will actually play!

  6. K2da

    Who cares who starts….only 3 games left.

  7. rnewton22

    Dakari needs to start and Willis needs some playing time. Could he be any worse than the players starting?

  8. yo

    >>>also mentioning Alex Poythress as a key member of the second half comeback effort

    How pitiful!!!

    1. 22?

      yo not sure what your point is but if it is confusion as to the constant praise of 22 I would agree. I have not checked the stats but I swear Alex has not made a shot beyond the length of 2 foot in his 2 year career up to this point

    2. Jack

      He’s the worst player I’ve seen don a Kentucky uniform since Saul Smith. He’s a fine young man, but he can’t play basketball. Awkward, slow, can’t shoot, can’t dribble, can’t pass. He can sometimes catch it wide open right under the goal when no one is guarding him and dunk it. That is, if he doesn’t step on the baseline first. But he must be the best ever in practice, according to Cal. Two years of how good he is in practice and just waiting for him to do it in a game. Two years, and 21 losses. Oh well. But Cal says he is the key to our comeback today, a game we last by 19. Cal is simply brilliant when it comes to coaching.

    3. Jack

      So, Cal thinks Poy made a big contribution in the comeback today? Is that the same Alex Poythress who played 24 minutes today and had 1 rebound and 2 total points right up until the last minute when he got a wide open garbage bucket in the last 30 seconds when the game was already over to give him a grand total of 4 points and one rebound for the entire game? The same Poythress who has not scored more than 3 points in the last 3 or 4 games, though he gets tons of PT?? And Cal makes that statement, and folks wonder why the Cats have been so embarrassing these last two years. Coach Cal obviously understands who to give the PT to. He is a coaching savant. Maybe if they don’t transfer, Willis and Lee might get a minute or two of PT per game next year. Maybe if they get 24 minutes like Poythress did today, they can also be a major factor in our comebacks.

  9. CopenhagenCat

    I agree he should be starting the kid is good around the basket, bad thing is can he stay outta foul trouble? But no doubt Johnson is a better shooter and can get fouled and make the basket. I still wish Cal would let Willis play. Wouldn’t hurt nothing. We need a shooter and the kid can shoot..

  10. Stu Katz

    Why does Young get 35 mins a game, worst defender of all time

    1. Bill Brasky

      I don’t want to bash on James, but his footwork is seriously suspect. Get the kid doing ladder drills or something. His footwork will have to improve by like 200% to even think about guarding someone at the next level. I’ll be rooting for him though.

    2. Luther

      Agree. JY is a definite liability on D, and when he passes the ball, and when he shoots FTs, etc., etc., etc.

    3. theoldbaldcoach

      Last year coach was saying, Kyle can shot , But I can’t use him because of his ” D”.

  11. yep

    “Calipari says Dakari needs to be starting”

    Duh. Slobber, slobber, drool. Somebody is learning.

    1. Luther

      Duh. Then start him and quit the whining…

  12. Sully

    Been saying Dakari should start all season. WCS? Nice kid, spotty player. Better Willie comes off the bench.

    1. Carol

      Poor guys. With a Coach that does this to kids, I feel sorry for this team. Did they not see that WILLIE CAULEY STEIN was one of the players that was playing the BEST, and he was the one of the main ones that was in the game that helped start that run that Cal talked about so much. As well as Randle and Poythress…???

      You know what? Coach Cal deserves to lose for this type of coaching. No wonder the team is in the shape it is in this year. Pitting players against each other is NOT classy. Dakari Johnson has a LONG way to go…to EVER come even close to WCS. I certainly hope to be rooting for WCS in the NBA!

      I’m just about done with UK ~ until Calipari is put out.

  13. Bill Brasky

    Never a good sign when the starting lineup still isn’t set going into the postseason.

    1. Carol

      The problem with the starting line up, imo, is the Coach. He leaves Harrisons in there to start, but dares to complain about WILLIE? ROFL!!! Really? He should start the ones that started the real run tonight… Poythress, Randle, Willie, etc…

      Pets will not win you the game.

  14. katdaddy

    He won’t have to worry about who’s starting long because this team is done. Still changing line up in march, Mfer can’t coach unless he has Two or Three NBA ready players.Last two team hasn’t had any player development at all 7 or 8 MDAA and all still look like AAU players.

    1. Carol

      I blame the coach for the downward turn in the players playing. They were looking good, imo, …until he started this stupid threatening them, mocking them, and pitting them against each other in starting. Today they looked but a shadow of their former selves.

    2. ShakingMyHead

      Embarrassing. Both of you.

  15. cats42301

    I guess Dakari didn’t tell Cal he wanted to start like when players are supposed to tell him they want to come out of the game.

  16. Reality

    Dakari is actually a basketball player. He’s one of the few on the team that has a high basketball IQ. He’s already better than WCS and will end up 10x better than him. He plays like a real big man and has good post moves. WCS is tall and athletic but has zero offense. Can’t shoot and no post moves at all. He’ll be nothing more than a rim protector in the NBA. As soft as he is against college players I can’t imagine how much he’ll get pushed around by pro’s. He’ll bounce around the NBA as a back up his whole career. But his size and athleticism will keep him getting paid and a nice seat to watch the games.