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I don’t want Doug Gottlieb to be right but he might be right


Of all the Duke-Kentucky reactions and analysis on the Twitter machine — and there is a lot — Doug Gottlieb’s tweet about the Cats stands out as one we don’t want to be true but might be true.

The college basketball analyst tweeted, “Story will rightfully be about Duke, but some part should go to Kentucky’s lack of PG despite 3 who people think are PGs. Also Hero is a shot nut who doesn’t defend. Travis is a traditional low post big who doesn’t move/defend well nor does he fit w/UK style.

It’s a harsh breakdown of the second-ranked team in America, but is he wrong?

Based only on last night’s game, I think he’s right. Kentucky didn’t have a point guard against Duke. Ashton Hagans got the start and he couldn’t do it. Immanuel Quickley couldn’t do it and I thought Quade Green was hard to watch. Collectively, they combined for 1-for-10 shooting from the field in an offense that never got in sync whatsoever.

As for Tyler Herro, “shot nut” is a label I tend to avoid but we did see some very poor shot selection from the otherwise sharp shooter. He took a couple that were mind-blowingly bad. His defense, also bad.

And for Gottlieb’s scouting report on Reid Travis, it’s pretty spot on but Travis played a hell of a game and there won’t be many teams with the athleticism of Duke to get around him. Travis is a traditional big and he doesn’t move well, as Gottlieb said, but he’ll beat a lot of opponents up with the way he plays. Travis is what he is and he’s good, despite some limitations athletically.

So as much as it’s hard to swallow, Gottlieb is right in Kentucky’s lack of a point guard, Herro’s lack of defense and shot selection, and how Travis plays.

But it was only one game, the first game of the year at that, so let’s not write this scouting report in ink. Hagans, Green, Quickley and Herro will play much better than they did last night. It was an uncharacteristically bad evening for all four.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

53 responses to “I don’t want Doug Gottlieb to be right but he might be right”

  1. Wade

    We just need to play at a slow pace and learn the game we can ramp it up in March but let’s stay with x and os. Passing first a lot of it and free throws and stadiums and and and and you get it!!!

    1. michaelb

      Do what dude? lol stadium?

    2. Robkycats54

      Hagan’s stink at point guard….. Should be coming off the bench period, gives us absolutely nothing on offense, turnover machine & just never in the right spot… I prefer quickly at least he is a threat, Duke was daring Hagan’s to make a shot & double teaming off of him all game smh then Herro took some of the worst shots in history I’m talking well contested smh but I believe that was first game jitters from him he’ll be fine, I think he should come off the bench though & give us instant offense…..

    3. Underdog

      My question:

      How do you guard RJ or Zion?

      Sans a zone,you must stay in front of them, and create charges. You or they will be on the bench with foul trouble. It must be THEM on the bench. Therefore, the only answer is that you must get in front of them and stay in front of them. Help defenders welcome too.

      Ulis was the best at this in recent memory, Liggins was good. MKG was good at this. Vanderbilt could do it.

      Who on this team can stay in front of RJ and keep him from getting to within 5 feet of the basket, where he will just shoot over you?

    4. ukcamel

      The way to guard Zion is stay in front of him, and let him take jump shots off the dribble. He also looks like he could be foul-prone on both sides of the ball (lots of spin moves on offense and reach-ins on defense, and aggression on both sides). The best defense against him is getting him to the bench. Stand in and draw fouls and then go straight at him on the other end.

  2. catsarerunnin

    I hate to agree but he’s right. But also dUKe is THAT good. They are scary good. Like I said earlier if you’re going all in on one and dones you better get the absolute best. There is a big big difference between the #1 recruiting class and the #2 as far as talent. And it ABSOLUTELY pains me to say that.

    1. az1006

      You’re right to an extent, but the difference in #1 and #2 isn’t always the same. This year it is a wide, wide gap because RJ Barrett and Zion Williamson are both once-in-a-generation type talents. And they are on the same team. By comparison, Duke’s had the #1 class in 4 of the last 5 years, and never, not once during that time, have they had a team that looked as dominant as they were last night. So, #1 classes or #2 classes year-to-year look different. It appears as though they have caught lightning in a bottle.

      That being said, I’m not sure Duke could have played any better than they did, and I’m not sure Kentucky could have played any worse. It was the perfect storm scenario. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself to keep my sanity.

    2. michaelb

      lol whatever it’s a pain to read your opinions actually

    3. Jester

      michael b your responses sound like something a 14 year old girl would type. You actually typed lol, and on top of that the comment had nothing to do with the conversation. Shouldn’t you be playing with snapchat filters right now?

  3. michaelb

    Listen , we hade an off night . That’s all. Of course Doug gotleib is gonna say this type thing . I just listened to the dan Patrick show and skip and Shannon and Greenberg etc. non of them said anything like that (for a reason). This type thing happens – I could go on and on. At some point it wouldn’t be out of the question for that Duke team to have its own problems down the road . They just happen to not start out with any last nite. I’ve seen too much basketball to be all that worried about last night. Our coach is notorious for molding his teams over the course to achieve the most . We have good coachable athletes . We’re okay guys

    1. az1006

      It was a lot like the 2014-2015 Kansas game when we beat the brakes off them. We looked unbeatable, and that night, we were. And there were a few other nights that season we were unbeatable. But there were also some nights when we were lucky to win, and we ultimately fell short in the Final Four. That game last night doesn’t crown Duke as champs, and it isn’t a death knell for us. Lot to learn, and if anything positive can be taken away, it’s that.

  4. UKinIN

    Calm down people. UK is 0-1 not 0-10 and not as bad as they looked last night. UK put up zero resistance to Duke. Calipari will correct that.

  5. michaelb

    Duke is liable to implode from the inside some day down the road . You never know how things are gonna turn out . It’s the same thing with the fab

  6. Alex90

    Jesus Christ it was embarrassing enough watch that performance last night but reading all these comments is worse. UK still has several good teams to play so let’s just chalk it up as a terrible performance and move on. Yes we need a starting PG to step up and Gero had a bad game but let’s not over analyze everything based on that 1 awful game.

  7. UKinIN

    Never pay attention to Gottlieb, or anyone for that matter, that can only identify a person’s flaws.

    1. jimmer

      Agree. Plz don’t quote him here. Same with Forde, Clay Travis etc. Those guys are click bait clowns. Don’t even look at what they say. Sheesh keep them off here.

  8. ukkatzfan

    A young Jerry tipton. A broken clock is right twice a day

  9. BBNJeffrey

    I want to start out by saying there are some things said here that I really do hate to agree with. Also, I am not a Herro fan as much as some are (I’m actually a K. Johnson fan). That being said; I believe they are being to hard on herro. What the hell is he picking on his defense when everyone except Johnson sucked. He wasn’t even close the hog ball as others on the team.

    1. ukcamel

      Yeah and Herro wasn’t really chucking until we were down 30 anyway. Who cares at that point?

    2. JusSayin

      We really should be talking about hoe Keldon Johnson rose to the occasion.

  10. secrick

    Kys Guards cannot shoot, that has been apparent in all the games.

  11. michaelb

    Today’s radio show was silly . It should have offered better council than it did. Even the panel ( plus the fans) seem panicked and avoided . It’s okay guys we’re gonna go to the final four at least .

  12. kjd

    Athletic bigs are more the norm nowadays, so Travis is going to struggle on defense.

  13. Bluebloodtoo

    It’s a harsh reaction, but time will tell.

  14. michaelb

    Anything from last nites game is not a good barometer for anything , we will look like a diff team the rest of the season . We will look back and laugh at this in February guys . Just hang in there we’re gonna be okay

  15. dbake

    First off Hero’s defense was no different than other UK player tonight. The last player off Dukes bench was knocking down 3s!!!! This was no first game fluke, jitters thing. If it was yeah we lose by 10 15 maybe 20. But when you lose by 34 points you are in trouble. We are in for a rough season….PJ same ol guy not one bit better. Same for Nick Richards same guy will always be no better than a bench big… he does not have it. Greene needs to go ahead and roll out to Iona. If not for Keldon and Travis….simply wow!! This was disgusting.

  16. NUM1UKFANFROMTHEVILLE

    I’m not saying the season is over, but the exhibition game we barely won (not counting running the score up last 5 min) and the Duke game were horrible. Zero D, I mean zero! Duke bench (which was suppose to be weak) even had a decent game. If we don’t take it personal starting today and get some assertiveness and will to win inside of us, we will not win the ship. Also, Keldon is our go to player on the wing but we need 2 other alpha males on the wing like Duke. Or we have to adjust to slow pace down low ball and get teams in foul trouble, which I thought we would do to Duke.

    1. cking

      The Duke Bench didn’t miss..they were lights out.

    2. michaelb

      Cal will use this to get the most out of our guys

  17. cking

    Our time is over.. 23 first round picks and one championship due to a Coach who doesn’t prepare his team with set plays or fundamentals.

    The reason we are not getting top Tier talent is simple..
    These kids want to learn the fundamentals from a great coach that teaches x and o’s.

    Cal says come here..I’ll rely on your talent, we will throw the ball out and see what happens..then with my connections I’ll get you to the NBA.

    This is exactly why the top kids are going to Duke.

    1. Jester

      It does kind of look that way after a few years. He’s a great recruiter, an average coach. This is UK. We should be in the championship game every 2-3 years, and winning the championship every 3-4.

    2. ukcamel

      Don’t forget the four Final Fours, which given the crapshoot that the NCAA tournament is, is pretty remarkable. Dean Smith took 20 years to win a championship and 10 more to win another, and was beloved.

      We were a miracle Luke Maye shot away from going to another Final Four two years ago, which we would have probably won.

      Fans like you can kick rocks. You probably didn’t go to UK and just became a fan because John Wall is cool. Get lost.

    3. bigbluebanana

      Well said camel.

    4. Jester

      camel I don’t know about the cking guy, but given the average age of the people on this website, I’ve been a fan since before most of you were born.

      The worst fan is the one who won’t face reality. Those are the fans who don’t want to see the team be the best it can be, they just want to keep rocking back and forth repeating “it will be alright.” The same ones that thought Billy Clyde was our savior.

      This is just one game, not the end of the world, but anyone with any basketball IQ knows Cal is first a recruiter, then in a distant second, an average coach. The numbers don’t lie.

      The fans who celebrate mediocrity are not wanted. Get lost.

    5. ukcamel

      The reality is that John Wooden and his bags of cash aren’t walking through that door. What you are asking for, namely making the championship every other year and winning it every 3-4 years, simply hasn’t happened in college basketball at any consistent level since the 60s and 70s with UCLA. One of us needs to face reality and it isn’t me.

      Since Cal got here we have more wins and more final fours than any team in college basketball, and have won our first title since 98. Is that mediocre? No it isn’t, so your whole dumb argument falls apart.

      Finally I will grant that a large part of Cal’s value and accomplishments are centered around recruiting. And he has lost a few recruiting battles recently, particularly to Duke. So what? It is a fluid process and ups and downs are inevitable, and yet we have either been #1 or #2 in recruiting every year (we just got killed by the team that was #1 in recruiting and somehow you are arguing Cal is a bad coach because he is only good at recruiting – I mean that is an own-goal). The people who need to get lost are the fair weather and toxic “fans” that share your false reality. You aren’t helping.

  18. Alleykat16

    Haven’t we seen this before, team is suppose to win it all struggle out of the block then we lose some games then right before the SEC TOURNEY we start clicking. Then the next thing you know we are in the final 4. This was the FIRST game no warm ups beside the 2 exhibition games. Call will get things going in march. I hope he does

  19. Shively1978

    Duke hit everything they threw up to. They will have nights they won’t be able to shoot like that. They will loose a game or two. Probably to someone like Virginia who slows down and dosent let you get out into transition. I didn’t mind trading seasons but I’m really disappointed because we basically lost to three freshman. Yes there bench played well but the bench didn’t crush us.

  20. crazychucky

    Let me preface this by saying that I’m not one of those kooks who thinks Cal should be replaced. Cal has brought a level of swag and excitement that we’ve NEVER experienced here before. I’m not talking about success, because no one can deny that we’ve had success in the past. I’m talking about being a relevant program with notoriety and appeal to elite recruits.

    However, I can’t help but feel that last night was a sign of times to come. I can handle being out-played, hell I can even handle being out-coached, but this goes deeper. We were out-recruited yet again, which is much more ominous.

    I always thought the Cal era would go out with a bang rather than a fizzle. I figured he’d win a few championships then ride off into the sunset as a hero. Maybe try to resurrect another program somewhere from obsolescence. Instead, we’ve got one title and a few epic disappointments – and top recruits seem to be preferring other schools at an increasing rate.

    We’ve had our shots at cutting the nets over the past few years, and they’ve painfully slipped through our hands. I can’t help but feel the window is closing on the most exciting era of Kentucky Basketball that I’ve ever personally witnessed. Will we continue to have success and relevancy under Cal? Top 25 rankings? Absolutely. Will we ever reach the juggernaut levels of Duke? I’m afraid not.

    I love Cal and what he’s done for our program. But I have to start being honest with myself instead of looking through my blue-tinted glasses. He’s lost his touch.

    1. ukcamel

      You do know that we already have two 2019 top-ten recruits with at the #1 and/or #3 player, right?

      Coach K imitated Cal, and had some pretty built-in advantages (coaching team USA, favor from the NCAA). It was bound to happen. Success breeds imitation.

    2. crazychucky

      I completely agree that Coach K imitated Cal. The problem is, he’s doing it better than Cal at the moment.

    3. az1006

      Pump the brakes, man and take a deep breath. It was one game. Two years ago, we had the best team in the country and lost to the eventual national champions on a last-second shot. If Luke Maye’s jumper rims out, and we go on to win in OT, it’s likely Cal has a second championship. If the officials called an obvious shot-clock violation in 2015, it’s likely Cal has 3. That’s the crap-shoot that is the NCAA Tournament. It isn’t fun sometimes, but it is what it is.

      He gives us a chance to be in the discussion every single year, and that won’t stop because we had one bad game. Duke may be better than us this year, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be better next year, or the year after that. These things are cyclical. We dominated recruiting for 5 or 6 years, and just because Duke has been a bit better the last 3 or 4 doesn’t mean Cal’s lost his touch. I mean, come on…Kentucky and Duke have been 1/2 in recruiting every year, in one order or the other. If Cal was bringing in the 5th best or 10th best class, I’d tend to agree with you. But that isn’t the case. K caught lightning in a bottle with Williamson and Barrett, who are both generational-type talents. I know it didn’t show last night, but we still have enough talent to be one of seven or eight teams capable of winning it all in March. That’s really all you can ask.

    4. crazychucky

      All valid points, az1006. Hindsight is 20/20 so they say, so I don’t put much stock in what could have been. Reality is Coach K and Duke own the game as we know it over the past few years (i.e. the Cal era). That hurts me to the core.

    5. E11Q

      I agree with you AZ. Cal had his dominant team when he got AD/MKG mix. Those were far and away the best two players in the country that year. This year that title belongs to Barret/Zion. We’re on the other end of it and we don’t like it all that much hahaha

    6. Jester

      Careful Chucky!! According to some of these kids, you can never identify your weaknesses and try to correct them, else you are not a true fan.

    7. ukcamel

      Chuck, that is true. And I’m sure it bothers Cal more than any of us. I also see that Duke won’t have another super-class next year and we might. We already have to top-10 players and might end up with #1 and/or #3.

      I’m all for saying it sucks that Duke has taken over the top spot at recruiting, but I think it’s silly to expect anyone other than Cal to take it back.

  21. dcforuk

    Talking heads are paid to talk. Way too soon to assess the legitimacy of what he says. I hear Charlie Brown’s teacher

  22. Booby Petrino

    These comments are funny. Some trolling, some overreacting. We’ll be fine, I’m not worried.

  23. Aar

    Development opportunities is the comeback to this tweet. To a narrowly focused, fixed mindset Gottlieb is right. Today and at Stanford, Travis was/is as stated. He came to UK to expand his range and game. Herro is a shooter. Shooters are streaky and get cold. He found ways to help his team in the second half. I think Quickly and Hagans will be effective before we play another top 10 team. However, I suggest learning from our opponent. To my eye the hardest lineup to guard last nigh was with a big at the point. Could this UK team be at its best with Johnson running point? Last year’s team looked really good with Vanderbilt running the break (not meaning to bring up all of the baggage that comes with that reference, just the isolated fallout)

  24. Biglaw Dawgin'

    A lot of our negatives come down to one fact: Duke was on fire. They came out and hit their first four shots and overall shot 50% from three. And they shot 25+ threes. Gottlieb’s critiques stem from the fact that the PGs, Herro, and Travis were all forcing it since we were so far behind. And they probably felt like they had to to get back in it. And he’s dead wrong on Travis, that dude plays hella on-ball D and can fit in on the break, mostly with his rebounds and outlets.

    Don’t get me wrong, Duke is good, but not 50% from 3 on the season good. No one is. His critiques may be partially right for one game, but won’t be right for the season and were merely a result of by Duke’s hot start.

  25. davis2319

    Gotlieb is 100% right. Harsh reality, but it is a reality nonetheless. Last night showed exactly what we look like. Granted Duke played probably what will be their best all around game of the season, there is still no excuse for the University of Kentucky to lose a basketball game by 34 points. Some of our biggest losses have come under Calipari. It’s great and all that we get players to the NBA, but when they are here they do not do a damn thing. Sweet 16’s and Elite 8’s. WE WERE GIVEN BY FAR THE EASIEST PATH TO THE FINAL FOUR AND WE COULDN’T BEAT KANSAS STATE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD. People saying we are the Alabama of college basketball are DELUSIONAL. Alabama wins championships. They don’t just take part, they take over.

  26. CopenhagenCat

    I think Cal had no clue who to start. So you got guys coming in sucking and playing a few mins and heading back to the bench. Cats couldn’t hit nothing. They played scared. Cal was didnt have them ready. Freaking embarrassing.

  27. notFromhere

    Doug is like JGoodman and Seth Davis. None of them like Cal. Best thing their stuff is good for is bulletin board material. Otherwise unfit to print. Might as well be a Tipton

  28. Brad

    Yall crazy. Cal more final fours and wins than anybody. Coach K looks like he has the best team this year. I’d argue first time since cal has been at UK. I find it odd to say he owning the game. Yes this season they look legit but now that duffle bag Caple is gone we will see what happens going forward. If all you value is titles. That we have won a total of 8… good for 2nd all time by the way. Then yeah I guess you could say we failing a little bit right now