That, my friends, was a lopsided basketball game. Montana State, a team that recently lost to Grand Canyon by 16, made the long trip to Lexington for a shot at the nation’s best and it did not go well for the Bobcats. Not at all. UK held them to 19 percent shooting on 61 attempts in the entire game. Blocks, there were plenty of them and some were violent. The official count credits UK with 12, though it seemed like 80. It was a 40-minute defensive performance from the boys in blue and white.
Let’s discuss a little bit of it, shall we?
UK held Montana State to 28 points. Twenty. Eight. Points.
It was the lowest point total from an opposing team since the invention of the shot clock. Take a second to process that one. No UK opponent was as bad at scoring the basketball in one game. And somehow, please tell me if you know, this same Montana State team scored 78 points against UCLA last weekend. That tells me fans should be pretty confident about the game in Chicago next month.
Montana State went over 13 minutes without scoring.
There were no bigger Montana State fans in the world than the 22,000 people wearing blue in Rupp Arena. Rarely do you see Big Blue Nation passionately cheer for the visiting team, but that was the case during the second half when the poor Bobcats couldn’t add to the scoreboard. We knew right away the game was headed that direction when Montana State couldn’t get the ball up the floor. It was laughable for a second, then it became sad because it was so unfair.
It was a rough start for Kentucky, believe it or not.
You wouldn’t know it by looking at the final score but the Cats got off to a very poor start. They went 0-for-10 from the field to begin the game and actually trailed by one point at 2-1. Coach Cal said, “We score one point in the first four minutes. Come on, are you kidding me? Now we were good enough to hold them to two, but that’s ridiculous. And again, we have got to work on that. We can’t start games like that.”
Montana State made one more field goal than Kansas, so there’s that.
Just another reminded of how truly special that win in Indianapolis was.
Book ’em Devin.
After scoring 15 points against Boston Friday night, Devin Booker’s hot hand continued with 18 points to lead all scorers on Sunday. Booker held a late game lead over Montana State, the entire team, at 18-17 with a little over seven minutes left, but he fell in the end, 28-18.
The freshman has been putting in a lot of work on his shot before and after practices. He made some changes to his footwork and it’s been very clear the hard work is paying off.
The 2012 block record is in serious jeopardy.
Kentucky holds the NCAA record for blocks in a single season with 344 in 2012, the Anthony Davis season. That team averaged 8.6 blocks per game on the year. Assuming this team plays 40 games, and that’s a very realistic assumption, it will break that record if it keeps up its current pace of 9.8 blocks. They’re on track for 392 right now.
Alex Poythress recorded another DNP.
Calipari expects Alex to practice on Monday and return to action Tuesday night against UT Arlington. He’s been missed but it’s been a blast watching Dominique Hawkins get more PT.
If Sam Malone isn’t your favorite player on the team, well, I don’t know what’s wrong with you.
I’ve watched this well over a hundred times and I’m not slowing down.
You gotta get that board, B-Long.
Dan Issel joined us on the KSR pregame show and he was great.
Ryan and I called up Kentucky’s all-time leading scorer from the radio bullpen to help us close out the pregame show. Issel had a lot of good things to say, especially when I asked him if he could play in a platoon system. “No, I have to play more than a half,” he said. You can listen to the entire interview below:
And with that, I’m off to enjoy my Sunday night.
Go Cats, everybody.