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Gary Parrish says it’s too early to judge Skal

Harry How/Getty Images North America

It’s been a rough week for Skal Labissiere. For the second game in a row, Skal was non-existent on both ends of the court, finishing with only six points and one rebound against UCLA. His total for two games? Eight points and three rebounds.

A lot of people are drawing comparisons between Skal’s struggles and Karl Towns’ struggles early last season. Karl only had two points and two rebounds in Kentucky’s win over North Carolina last year, a similar stat line to Skal’s this week. CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish makes that argument in his column today, telling fans to “chill” with the Skal criticism for now:

As for Labissiere, undeniably, he’s struggled the past two games. He only had six points and one rebound in Thursday’s loss at UCLA. He got two points and two rebounds earlier this week against Illinois State. But the 6-foot-11 forward has also scored at least 13 points in half of UK’s contests, and he had a 26-point performance in last month’s win over NJIT.

In other words, chill.

I can’t promise Labissiere is definitely going to breakthrough, start playing tougher, began to rebound better and actually become a top-three pick like Wiggins and Towns. But what I can tell you is that it’s too early to speak definitively on the subject, one way or another. That’s something everybody should’ve learned from Wiggins two years ago, then again from Towns last year. And it’s something everybody would be wise to remember now.

I agree for the most part, but the only part of the comparison between Skal and Karl that I have a problem with is their frames. Karl was big enough to hold his own in the post; Skal is not. There isn’t a quick fix for that, which means he’s going have to try even harder to maintain position or Cal will have to tinker with the lineup to try him at a different position. Regardless, can we get this Skal back?

[CBS Sports]

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 Gary Parrish says it’s too early to judge Skal

  1. Sentient Third Eye
    4:34 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    You don’t have to be built like a wrestler to fight for rebounds. That scrawny Welsh for UCLA is about as bony as Skal and has far less athletic ability, but he had 11 boards last night. Why? Because he fought for them.

  2. TonyMontana
    4:51 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    Skal has dropped from #1 in mock NBA draft to #3. Briscoe dropped down to #20. Poythress isnt listed. These players need to step it up and toughen up. Poythress needs to finish like we know he can. Whenever I see a player miss a dunk, layup or put-back, I call it “Poythritis”…but man I love that kid, I hope he can get it going. Was looking forward to UK having another #1 overall pick…doesnt look like that is going to happen. (Murray is listed at #7, Ulis is listed at #42, Marcus Lee at #44)

  3. @BallBlog_Chad
    4:57 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    so Welsh smacked Lee in the face and took him out of the game and was all over Skal, I’m pretty sure that play (in the pic) ended up as a turnover

  4. Jaxson
    5:03 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    Skal isn’t the most physical player to begin with. When he gets in early foul trouble he almost disappears.

  5. RealCatsFan
    5:41 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    Yeah, no foul in that picture either. Just like the whack on Marcus Lee wasn’t a foul. UCLA is going to be in for a rude awakening when they come to Rupp next year and they don’t get any of that home cooking. Not that we lost the game because of that, and I realize it’s hard for the refs to catch everything in live action, but these pictures are ridiculous.

  6. rainman
    7:32 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    Just like the pic above, a foul wasn’t called on this muging!

  7. Wildc8ts
    9:36 pm December 4, 2015 Permalink

    Actually, Gary’s wrong. it’s entirely appropriate to Judge Skal. Because he sucks,… right…NOW.

    What would be wrong to do, is to write him off, because he still has potential that will emerge. He will grow into a player, BUT (and this is the possible bad news) it may not happen in the next couple of months. He looks like he needs a couple of years of strength and maturity.

    Either way, time will tell.