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Calipari expecting to see more of the Triangle-and-Two defense

Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 11.44.44 AM

On Saturday, one way Kansas was able to slow Kentucky down in the second half was the triangle-and-two defense, a hybrid of man-to-man and zone. Bill Self’s squads are famous for using the junk defense, which helped them shut down Harrison Barnes and Reggie Bullock to win the 2012 Midwest Regional. On Saturday, Frank Mason and Davonte Graham played man-to-man against Tyler Ulis and Jamal Murray, while Kansas’ other three defenders created a triangle zone in the post. Late in the game, the triangle-and-two forced a tired Tyler Ulis to make some uncharacteristic poor decisions, and on today’s SEC Coaches Teleconference, John Calipari said he expects to see more of it from now on, including tomorrow night in Knoxville.

“I think, and again, watching and knowing it and coaching against Rick in the past, this is a difficult game. He probably looked at the triangle-and-two and said, ‘Hey, let’s throw that at ’em.’ When we faced it versus Kansas, we scored 20 points and missed six free throws in it. But until I put Skal in there, that was confident enough to shoot that elbow jumper, it kind of put us out rhythm for a minute. I would imagine they’ll try a lot of different stuff to keep us from that post position.”

Something tells me the team is receiving a crash course in the triangle-and-two right now at the Joe Craft Center.

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.

7 Comments for Calipari expecting to see more of the Triangle-and-Two defense

  1. mudcreekmark
    1:10 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink

    Calipari can recognize that other coaches will use different defenses to slow them down but he cannot recognize that he should do the same. Every team you have is different, Every team you play is different. Each have strengths and weaknesses. How do you expect man to man to work against everyone? Perfect example was when Wiltjer was at UK. The kid should have been on the floor simply because he is a scoring machine. Cal should have known from watching him in high school that he wouldn;t be able to keep people in front of him and should have known that he would have to play zone to keep him on the floor,

    • ukjaybrat
      1:47 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink

      The fact is, zone defense requires a lot more practice time than man to man. Cal would rather spend his practices teaching players how to use their full offensive potential and then touch on man to man defense than spend half a practice teaching a skill they won’t use much in the NBA anyway.

    • za
      2:32 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink

      Are you seriously saying Cal should abandon his entire philosophy (defensively at least) for KYLE WILTJER? Give me a break

    • za
      2:32 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink


  2. ukjaybrat
    1:15 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink

    I am not an expert play-caller whatsoever, but the triangle-and-2 seems really vulnerable to dribble drive when you have 3 or more jump shooters. Which is why skal shooting from the elbow was effective when he was making it.

    • CatsfaninFL
      3:03 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink

      Agreed, but having Briscoe cramping most of the 2nd half kept us from having some really great penetrators. Honestly I think him going down frequently in 2nd half kept us from getting in a rhythm and that coupled with the defense did us in. I’m not too worried, think this team will be fine come March.

  3. @BallBlog_Chad
    2:50 pm February 1, 2016 Permalink

    great picture … probably shouldn’t have 2 guys hide behind 1 defender across the court from the ball, ha … if willis hadn’t been in foul trouble, the spacing would have been better … maybe should have given mulder a few minutes

    not sure how much of this defense had to do with the ending of the game compared to our point guard being sick and exhausted from playing the entire game

    hawkins might have been able to give him a break, but there was a unique situation with him coming back from an injury and being rusty … briscoe usually helps with pg duties, but his leg was cramping … murray has not been able to play pg