Watching this team shoot jump shots is painful. What’s sad is that Quade Green is probably the most dependable 3-point shooter and he’s only made 25 on the season. Kevin Knox has made the most on the team but is only shooting 33% for the season. There just isn’t anybody on the team that should scare an opponent and force them to game plan against letting that guy shoot. In the last 2 games, this has been painfully obvious. Just five made 3’s in the two games in 37 attempts. My first reaction is that had to be one of the worst stretches I can remember in shooting the ball under Calipari. And while it is one of the worst, it’s not actually THE worst. Here is the list of times that UK has made 6 or fewer three-pointers in a two game stretch under Cal:
2014-15: 3 for 19, 15.8% (Providence, Texas)
2009-10: 4 for 28, 14.3% (Louisville, Georgia)
2014-15: 4 for 25, 16.0% (Texas, Eastern Kentucky)
2017-18: 4 for 21, 19.0% (at Vanderbilt, at South Carolina)
2013-14: 4 for 20, 20.0% (LSU, Arkansas)
2017-18: 5 for 34, 14.7% (at Missouri, Tennessee)
2009-10: 5 for 33, 15.2% (South Carolina, at Tennessee)
2013-14: 5 for 31, 16.1% (Ole Miss, at Mississippi St)
2014-15: 5 for 30, 16.7% (Eastern Kentucky, Columbia)
2017-18: 5 for 28, 17.9% (at South Carolina, Florida)
2014-15: 5 for 26, 19.2% (at Florida, at LSU)
2015-16: 5 for 25, 20.0% (Wright State, Boston U)
2015-16: 5 for 20, 25.0% (Duke, Wright State)
2011-12: 5 for 16, 31.3% (at Tennessee, Arkansas)
2014-15: 5 for 16, 31.3% (at South Carolina, at Missouri)
2014-15: 5 for 16, 31.3% (Florida, Florida)
2009-10: 6 for 48, 12.5% (Cornell, West Virginia)
While there have been five times that UK has made 4 or less threes in a 2-game stretch, only one of those times was the PERCENTAGE less than UK’s 14.7% in the last 2 games. What’s even crazier is UK went 8-2 in those 10 games while this team obviously has gone 0-2.
The 14.7% is dreadful but also not the worst. In fact, UK has had TWO other times they have shot worse over two games, both in Calipari’s first season. Most notably, the last 2 games of that season against Cornell and West Virginia, where the Cats jacked up 48 three-pointers, only making six, for a 12.5% clip.
I think it’s probably time we do a little less shooting from behind the arc. On this list above, a total of 17 instances, in only one case has UK shot more attempts than the 34 this team has thrown up at the hoop. That is, once again, the final two games of the 2009-10 season. Clearly, this is not the team to knock them down on a consistent basis and it has put this season on the brink of disaster. We have athletes. We have finishers. We should focus on that and less on hitting the jump shot. If not, this team might find itself on that list above quite a few more times.