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Kentucky tinkering with new lineups during “intense” practices



How is Kentucky coping with back-to-back losses? By going harder than ever in practice. Both Kevin Knox and Wenyen Gabriel said practices this week were “intense,” packed with conditioning and five-on-five scrimmaging using new lineup combinations.

“We came off of a tough loss to Tennessee, but yesterday we had a really good practice,” Knox told reporters. “Really got after it. A lot of conditioning. Played a lot of five-on-five just to get some more playing time together. We just tried out different lineups yesterday too as well. Like I said, I think it was a really good practice. I think we feel pretty good going into tomorrow.”

Even with less than a month left in the regular season, John Calipari said he’s still experimenting with lineups to see what can pull the Cats out of their rut.

“I hate to do that with like six and seven games to go, but we’re still – it seems like every team in the country is struggling, and the veteran teams are the ones who are doing well. We’re all probably trying to do the same thing. How are we going to get this, the dots – cross the t’s, dot the i’s, connect everything. The kids are trying. It’s just, it’s not easy.”

Wenyen Gabriel said the Cats have also been focusing on what to do late in games, one of their biggest areas of weakness in recent weeks.

“Practice has been really intense lately,” Wenyen said. “We did a lot of competitive things. We’ve been going at it during late-game situations and going at it during five-on-five during practice. We’ve been doing a lot of conditioning and we’re getting on a lot of shots up, too.”

Let’s hope it translates to the court. What do you think Kentucky’s best lineup is right now?


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.

22 Comments for Kentucky tinkering with new lineups during “intense” practices

  1. BBNDan7
    5:07 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    Hami needs to sit

    • Aar
      5:35 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      Diallo has a lot to offer this team. He is working hard on his defense. He is also working hard to get in the offensive rhythm. He needs minutes to get to the point that he’s helping this team to his greatest potential. His teammates also need rest to play most efficiently. Hopefully, he gets his playing time when the team can most afford for him to have it.

    • BBNDan7
      6:02 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      Every game Calipari takes him out and says “he can’t play in this game”

    • unbridled
      10:05 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      Aar, is he though? “Working hard” on defense does not translate to good defense. The poor kid sends the team out of sync when he’s on the floor. Until his production improves…he needs to sit.

  2. Bull Filmer
    5:22 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    A tweak is in order. This is all part of a good coaches shtick. Keep expectations low – exceed expectations. I’ve seen several games where I scratched my head in regards to some things. The most recent of which was the last UT game. And, arguably the UT game in Knoxville. But you can teach kids certain things. Sometimes, for it to sink in, this happens via a coaching move – or not – during a game. Case in point. The last minute of the UT game @ Rupp. Will they remember that? Yes. Will they remember how they could have won that game? Yes. These kids all have talent; no question. Cheers to CAL getting them on the same page.

  3. the ghost of Bill Hicks
    5:32 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    Wish Cal would try a small lineup of Green, SGA, Knox, Vanderbilt and Weynen. I trust those guys the most…..I guess.

    • Aar
      5:39 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      That lineup is not SO small. The only truly under height player is Green. None of the three 6-9+ Guys is great at holding position in the block but Vanderbilt and Gabriel both have a nose for rebounds.

    • runningunnin.454
      6:04 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      But Nick played well last game.

    • pgsays
      8:13 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      Lol that’s the exact lineup I just posted. I agree 100%. SGA can’t sit unless he just needs to catch a quick break. Green one of your better shooters. Knox can get points in a hurry when engaged. Wenyen and Vanderbilt bring energy and play hard at all times.

    • unbridled
      10:07 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      Love he line up but I think Washington and jones split time. Leave everyone else out there to battle.

  4. BigBlueNationDude
    5:33 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    Cals trying everything isnt he. No mix of lineup with these guys is working. Try Brad

  5. Angelo
    5:36 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    Too little, too late…

  6. bhb71
    6:15 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink


  7. KYJelly
    7:10 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    The offense has to run through Knox, if he won’t assert himself, you assert him for himself. We don’t win without him balling. Richards has earned a starting spot and starts games well. We need instant offense to get in a groove, so quade needs to start and PJ over Vando for that reason. Vando and Gabriel come off the bench for energy, Hami gets limited minutes until his decision making is trustworthy

    • runningunnin.454
      7:26 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      Good call.

    • BonnieTayshaunBilly
      8:53 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

      I would like to see a pick and roll or pick and pop with Knox setting the screen. He stands around too much. Try Knox at the 5. Maybe if he gets banged on, he’ll bang back. He can rebound. Has he fouled out this year?

  8. KYjellyRoll
    7:35 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    Sga green Knox vando Gabriel and Richards as 6th man

  9. Mc12
    8:11 pm February 9, 2018 Permalink

    Green, SGA, Knox, Vanderbilt, Richards
    The 3 best shooters. Their best rebounder. Their best potential shot blocker and shot changer.

  10. Peas and Carrots
    12:43 am February 10, 2018 Permalink

    The fans have spoken. Hami is slightly better than Brad Calipari.

  11. BlueSteel
    10:38 am February 10, 2018 Permalink

    And this is just one more reason to trust Cal!! Remember last year when all the “Fans” were complaining and questioning him on why he didn’t play Diallo? Just a hunch – I think Cal knows a little better about what’s going on than you do! Having said that I still believe we need Hami to play well if we are going to legitimately make a run – He can be a game changer.