Over the last four games, Reid Travis has not lived up to his billing as Kentucky’s most consistent contributor. The senior graduate transfer from Stanford has certainly seen better days in Lexington, but it isn’t the first time he’s hit a wall in his college career.
“I think it’s all part of the journey. It’s been a little up and down the last couple games, but by no means discouraged or anything like that,” Travis said this afternoon. “It’s been good for me to see things on film, to play against some of these teams in conference play. I’m encouraged by that fact, that I’m getting to see some film on myself and continue to just get better every day.”
Travis cannot specifically point out what’s gone wrong, but he can admit that he expected to encounter a stretch like this at some point this season.
“It’s just a process. I wouldn’t say there’s one thing that’s different. I think that’s just what comes from changing your game and just the flow of the season. You’re going to have games where maybe you don’t make some shots that you were making early on. It’s not right, wrong or indifferent; it’s just that some of those were falling a couple weeks ago and just gotta get back to that.”
It’s difficult to describe the power forward’s dip in production. Travis’ numbers have not dropped dramatically since he scored 20 on Luke Maye before Christmas. He grabbed 12 rebounds on Saturday, but only scored five points. A week earlier against Alabama, Travis flirted with his season average, 12 points and 6 rebounds, but something felt off around the rim. Many outsiders blame Travis and PJ Washington’s struggles on the guards’ poor passing.
“I think it’s a two-way street,” Travis disagreed. “It’s just getting on the same page. No one’s selfish. We all want to get the ball in the paint because at the end of the day that helps everyone else get open shots. As we continue to play together, get better, on the same page, I think you’ll see the ball get there a lot better and we’ll be a lot more effective.”
Without significant production from Travis, Kentucky has won three of their last four and that’s what matters most.
“I think it’s easy to get caught up in ‘we should have done this better or done that better’ but a win’s a win. You should have fun with that. You should celebrate that,” he said.
“Obviously we’re going to try to improve every game and try to get better at the things that we didn’t do right at the game, but at the end of the day be happy with the fact that you were able to pull out some ugly wins and celebrate that fact because that’s what we’re trying to do. We’re trying to win. As those keeps rolling together, we’ll keep building confidence off of that.”