Earlier this month, the NCAA announced two rule changes for the upcoming season: the three-point line will move to the international distance of 22 feet, 1¾ inches and the shot clock will reset to 20 seconds after an offensive rebound. On today’s SEC Summer Basketball Teleconference, John Calipari weighed in on how those changes will affect Kentucky’s style of play.
“I think they are good,” Cal said of the rule changes. “I like the reset to 20 [seconds]. The game will be faster. I like the three-point line spreading out because the teams that – I’m not a big proponent of shooting 40 threes [per game], and if you are, that percentage is going to go down now. I think it’ll make the game more about movement and spacing and open up the lane a little bit more. I think it’s all good. But, you know, it’ll play out and I just, like I said, for young kids to say, ‘That line’s moving back and we’ll shoot the same percentage,’ I just don’t see it happening. I think percentages will come down and now, as a coach, you’ve got to make a choice: are we going to shoot that many threes or are we going to be more of a driving, lane-touch kind of team?”
Calipari said he’s already started to prepare his guys for the changes by encouraging them to play more pick-up games to hone their instincts.
“The one thing I’m trying to get these guys to do – too much individual work. We need more pick-up basketball. We need more movement. We need more spacing. We need more chemistry. They need to play. There’s no arms on the cone. There’s also just you and a guy. Well, guess what, the game has changed. You need to know what you’re going to do with that ball before you catch it. That means you’ve got to play. So, we’re trying to play more pick-up basketball.”