In many ways, Hamidou Diallo has become the poster child of Kentucky’s struggles. Like Kentucky, he showed glimpses of greatness early on, but has reverted to bad habits. In the past four games, he’s averaged only 5.75 points (2.9 if you take out the second half vs. Texas A&M) and looks less like a dynamic playmaker and more like a bull in a china shop, flailing at the basket and arguing with his coach and teammates when things don’t go his way. Today, Hami acknowledged his recent struggles and vowed to do better, especially on defense.
“It’s been a roller coaster for me. It’s been up and down and I’ve still been trying to identify myself within this team. I haven’t been playing well, have been playing terrible on defense and I just need to pick it up. I need to pick it up to a different level of play for myself and for this team.”
After watching him vs. Texas A&M, it was really good to see Hami take ownership of his poor play, which he told reporters was glaring on film.
“It looks terrible on the film, to be honest. We all look terrible, including myself, and it’s just things we’re going to have to get better at. We see it on the film now and now it’s all about correcting it.”
Kenny Payne told reporters that this team isn’t capable of making up for their scoring droughts, a statement Hami wholeheartedly agreed with.
“Yeah, 100 percent. We’ve seen it multiple times. We’re not good enough to let any team just come out and score a bunch of baskets on us, hit a bunch of shots and think that we’re going to be able to play our way back every game. We’re just not that good.”
That’s a frank statement I doubt anybody would argue with, as is this next one.
“Me, myself, I have to do a much better job on defense and a much better job on offense.”