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Calipari compares Tyler Ulis and Jamal Murray to John Wall and Eric Bledsoe


Tyler Ulis and Jamal Murray are, on their own, incredible point guards that any team would be lucky to have. Together, they’ve become arguably the best backcourt in the nation. Over the past month, the duo has been deadly, thanks in large part to Murray making better decisions with the ball. This afternoon, John Calipari was asked how Jamal Murray was adjusting to playing off the ball and taking a backseat to Tyler Ulis.

“It’s not really a backseat, kid’s probably one of the leading scorers in the country. That’s a heck of a backseat, can I jump in there with you?” Calipari quipped.

Murray’s progress and chemistry with Tyler Ulis this season reminded Calipari of another backcourt duo.

He’s probably playing a lot like Eric Bledsoe played when he played with John Wall. I can remember Eric getting 32 against Wake Forest in the NCAA Tournament, just going crazy. I remember 27, 28 on the road down at Florida. They play off each other. One game, one does it, one game the other does it. He’s still playing pick and rolls, he’s playing as a scoring guard, which is helping him.”

“The whole thing is not the position, it’s your decision making, and that’s what’s improving for him, what’s making him a better player and us a better team,” Cal said. “His shot selection has gotten better week by week by week. He’s getting to the rim instead of settling for all jump shots and step backs and fades and when he has shots, he takes them. His decision making as a basketball player has gotten better and better and better.”

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Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

13 Comments for Calipari compares Tyler Ulis and Jamal Murray to John Wall and Eric Bledsoe

  1. Rise
    3:08 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    Very tough, but I would go with Ulis and Murray. You can’t go wrong with two solid shooters.

  2. jrdh13
    3:12 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    You also can’t go wrong with 2 nba all Stars. The explosiveness of wall and Bledsoe is unmatched ever.

  3. bigblue09
    3:13 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    When it comes to talent I don’t there is much question that Wall/Bledsoe are the clear choice, but as far as basketball IQ Ulis and Murray have it there.

    Gotta take Wall/Bledsoe just because of the overwhelming talent gap

    • jrdh13
      3:15 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

      We can’t forget who’s record Tyler is breaking with the 20 and 8 thing I know John wall was one of them

  4. Dusten
    3:23 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    You’ve got to remember you’re comparing sophomore Tyler Ulis to freshman John Wall and freshman Jamal Murray to freshman Eric Bledsoe. Wall and Bledsoe have always been SO much fun to watch, but weren’t as good of college players as people remember.

    • jcatron
      4:42 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink


      The NBA versions of Wall/Bledsoe (especially Bledsoe) are MUCH better versions than when they were at Kentucky.

      I think Ulis/Murray are the better college backcourt and Wall/Bledsoe are better players to build an NBA team around.

      Regardless though, both combinations are freaking incredible!

    • Melvit
      5:43 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

      I agree. Wall and Bledsoe weren’t as good as Ulis and Murray are on the offensive end. That’s one of the things that cost UK the Final Four in ’10.

  5. J-Dub421
    3:43 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    Flip a coin and choose a backcourt. You really can’t go wrong with either.

    • nets on nets on nets
      4:07 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

      @J-Dub421 but you can definitely go wrong choosing the Harrison Twins over Ulis/Booker in the last 5 minutes of the Wisconsin Final 4 game last year.
      Comparing Ulis/Murray to Wall/Bledsoe is like comparing Wiggins to Lebron, Drake to Tupac, Reebok to Nike, Baseball to Basketball.

    • J-Dub421
      4:29 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

      1. No one was talking about the Harrisons, so why are you bringing them up?

      2. You’re wrong. Go look at Ulis/Booker’s stats from that game because they are less than impressive. The Harrisons were the correct choice to be in at the end of that game.

      3. Stop talking to me. I am tired of wasting my time on an obnoxious Duke troll with no life and nothing better to do than troll on the internet. Go find a Duke message board if you’re so desperate to talk to someone.

  6. King Ghidora
    4:48 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    Wall and Bledsoe are absolutely great PG’s. Murray and Ulis are too. Wall and Bledsoe were more athletic for sure. Murray and Ulis play smarter especially Ulis. Remember too that defenses had to collapse back on Boogie when that group played. That isn’t happening now. Defenses are congregating at the 3 point line. That makes a big difference. There is no insanely good inside scoring threat this year. So the current guards are going against much tougher D aimed at stopping them. Wall and Bledsoe were often left open to shoot as they pleased because it took so many double and triple teams to stop Cousins.

    As college guards I have to go with Ulis and Murray. I doubt they will be as good in the pros but UK isn’t a pro team. They might very well be great pros but Wall is the fastest guard in the league. He can dribble faster than some people can run. That’s just crazy amazing. And in the pros there won’t be defenses geared to stopping him from shooting in the half court but they will certainly try to stop him from running. Bledsoe has become a great player also. The current guards will have a tough time matching the talent level of Wall and Bledsoe so they probably won’t be as good as pros. But Ulis is incredibly smart and that counts for a lot. Many people said Curry would never make it as a pro. People laughed when he was drafted 7th overall. They aren’t laughing so much now.

    We’ll just have to wait and see about the pros. But as a college combo I’ll take the current guards by a nose.

  7. A_Blue_Wildcat
    6:21 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    I think people forget what Wall and Bledsoe were like in college. They’ve been great pros, but in college they didn’t shoot the ball with any consistency, turned it over too much, and weren’t great defensively (not that Murray is any better in that regard). They were a more explosive and athletic duo than Ulis and Murray, but that’s the only thing they were better at in their year at Kentucky. Ulis and Murray turn it over less, shoot better, play better defense (at least Ulis does), and surprisingly enough rebound the ball better (Ulis and Murray combined rebound average is 7.9rpg whereas Wall and Bledsoe was 7.4rpg). I doubt Ulis and Murray will be as great of pros as both Wall and Bledsoe, but as college players I give them the edge.

  8. BobNWeaver
    10:32 pm February 17, 2016 Permalink

    In college you go with the better shooters, and that means Ulis and Murray. In college, defenses can pack 5 guys in the box and dare a team to make shots. (This defense is illegal in the NBA, but common in the NCAA tournament, and is why Wall and Bledsoe lost to WV in Elite 8.)