Trying to figure out how to play Skal Labissiere has been one of John Calipari’s biggest challenges this season. After watching Skal put up 11 points off some impressive jumpers, Cal said maybe he just needs to accept that Skal is a “jump-shooting big man” instead of trying to make him bang around in the post.
“I’m trying everything to figure out this team and I’m trying to figure out individuals. In my genius ways, I’m trying to post him up and make him — Maybe [Skal] is a jump shooting big man. So, let him shoot jump shots!,” Cal said, adding that Skal still needs to get in better shape in order to do that. “But, he had confidence because he made a couple shots. That’s not on him, that’s on me.”
Skal admitted that moving away from the basket helped his game flow a lot more on offense.
“It helped a lot. I just kind of took what the defense gave me. My teammates and Coach Cal put me in a great situation to have great looks to score, so I took advantage of it.
Hilariously, Calipari said he thinks Tyler Ulis had the realization that Skal is better off playing away from the basket a few weeks back.
“After the game, I said [to the team], ‘how was he?’ And the team all — I said, ‘guys, let me tell you, a lot of this is on me. Maybe he is a jump-shooting big guy. What do you think?’ And Tyler looked around and he must have said that to Kenny [Payne] weeks ago. ‘Dude, you’re trying to make this guy something he’s not. He’s not Shaq. He’s a jump-shooting big man.’ If he rebounds and blocks, I’ll let him shoot jump shots.”
Further proof that Tyler Ulis knows all.