Immanuel Quickley is on quite the heater. The sophomore guard has made eight of his last nine threes, including five of six this afternoon. During Kentucky’s four-game winning streak, Quickley is 14-23 from the outside (60.8%), 20-40 (50%) from the field, and 21-22 (95.5%) from the free throw line, averaging 18.8 points per game.
Those are great numbers, but what makes Quickley’s run even more impressive is how many of those shots came at crucial moments. His threes vs. Georgia changed the momentum of the game. His three with a minute left today vs. Alabama helped put away the Crimson Tide for good.
“With him shooting it like that, it’s a completely different team,” Alabama coach Nate Oats said. “If he shoots 5-6 from three, I don’t know who’s better than them in the country.”
Quickley’s final three came just after a 30-second timeout, prompting John Calipari to joke that he iced his own player.
“The last one, it’s kind of tough. We knew we were going to run something like that, and then I call a timeout and you’re the guy shooting the ball and I ice you. I ice you and you’re my guy. And he still makes it.”
Quickley’s threes will steal the spotlight, but we would be remiss not to mention his performance from the free-throw line. He was 2-2 from this charity stripe today, bringing his total for the season to 48-51 for a stellar 94.1%.
“He’s a confident kid. What he does, he spends so much time in the gym, he expects to make them,” Cal said. “Kid lives in the gym. He’s kind of like Tyler Herro, Shai Alexander, those guys. He’s just like them. The energy, he finishes first on every run. He’s built his own [confidence].”
After seeing this quote from after the game, that’s an understatement.
“Steaming hot,” Quickley said when asked how hot he is right now. “If you touch me, you might burn.”