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Takeaways From The Cats’ SEC Semifinal Win

Kentucky is on to the championship game here in St. Louis after putting an end to Alabama’s run in the SEC Tournament. The Cats beat the Fighting Collin Sextons to advance to the ‘ship and I have a few things to say about it in today’s edition of the postgame takeaways.


Wenyen Gabriel was awesome.

Whatever device you’re reading this on — phone, tablet, laptop, desktop, WebTV, homing pigeon — put it down for a moment and give Wenyen Gabriel your best round of applause. Gabriel was outstanding today as Kentucky’s leading scorer with 23 points, matching his career high in that category. He went 7-for-7 from three-point land and set a new school record for threes made in the SEC tournament. After the game, John Vincent Calipari said, “Wenyen was unbelievable today.”

Collin Sexton finally cooled off.

After averaging 29 points per game in Alabama’s first two here in St. Louis, Kentucky held him to 21 (that’s good, right?) and sent him home from the tournament. Sexton’s the type of guy who can beat you all by himself, and though he still got plenty of points, it wasn’t nearly enough to keep the Crimson Tide’s dreams alive.

Point guard by committee.

Big shout-out to Quade Green and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who had eight points apiece in the win. Assists were a problem in Kentucky’s struggles last month, so it’s encouraging to see each of the two point guards share the rock for a combined 16 assists in the game. They were aware of who was hot (Wenyen) and got them the ball. Solid point guard play from the UK backcourt.

Kentucky was HOT.

The Cats shot 64 percent from the field and 66.7 from outside in the game. That is stupid hot. Did you see this shot chart from the second half?

That’ll do.

PJ Washington is the man.

Once again, Washington played extremely well when Kentucky needed help carrying the load inside. We do a lot of talking about Kevin Knox and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander as UK’s two best players, but Washington’s name should be in that conversation with the way he has played lately.

Point of concern: Rebounding

For all of the good we saw in the win, we also saw the Cats give up 13 offensive rebounds. That’s way too many, and a little concerning because they gave up 16 to Georgia on Friday. Let’s get that under control.

Kentucky looks really good right now.

I don’t want to get ahead of myself and start making some outlandish predictions, so I’ll just say I like my team right now. The Cats are looking good going into the title game and even better if they can get Jarred Vanderbilt back before next week. It won’t be easy, but maybe this team has some magic in it?


Go Cats.



Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

21 Comments for Takeaways From The Cats’ SEC Semifinal Win

  1. Harveyww
    5:31 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

    Shai had 19

    • Booby Petrino
      5:36 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

      He meant assists. They both had 8 assists. Drew is probably drunk, let’s overlook it ha ha

    • Harveyww
      7:06 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

      Me too but I can’t still read lol ?

  2. maximumscott
    5:32 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

    This team ia getting it right.

  3. runningunnin.454
    5:53 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

    Where are all my friends that say Cal can’t coach?

    • Ez21
      6:03 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

      U make 15-16 jumpers in the 2nd half and you barely have to coach. He’s done a great job. Lol

    • BigBlueNationDude
      6:20 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

      Where are you gonna be when we dont win the title..yet again

    • 4everUKblue
      7:55 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

      Still the winningest program in college basketball history, a question you could have answered yourself with a little research. But you’re a hopeless idiot.

    • jaws2
      7:55 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

      Yes, because EVERYONE wins a title 3 out of 4 times their in the tournament! Geeeez, you’re a complete waste of time for any actual logic!

    • BigBlueNationDude
      12:45 pm March 11, 2018 Permalink

      National title dip

    • ClutchCargo
      3:37 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      BBNDouche is an oxygen bandit and a waste of skin all at the same time.

  4. KYJelly
    10:52 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

    PJ could be looking at tourney MVP if he plays well and they handle Tennessee. Shai will be a close 2nd

  5. callitlikeiseeit
    10:54 pm March 10, 2018 Permalink

    look we have beaten a team not close to making the tourney and that was playing their 3rd game in 3 days, today we beat a bubble team also playing their 3rd game in 3 days. Those 2 wins, that 75% of teams would win, got us to a conference title game…..only in the sorry SEC. I don’t think Tenn is all that great but have shown to be the best in the SEC and beating them I would consider a good win.

    • cosmic_cats
      12:48 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      lol of all the teams on our side of the bracket, we were the ones who made it to the final, and we did so convincingly. I guess all those teams that lost wouldn’t be included in your 75%

    • TXwildcat57
      3:56 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      callitlikeiseeit: you obviously know absolutely nothing about college basketball…this year the SEC is better than any other conference in America…we won the SEC/Big12 challenge without 2 of our better teams participating (Auburn/Mizzou)…UK is 2-0 versus ACC teams this year…UK, 2 games in a row, just neutralized 2 potentially lottery picks…Cal gets paid, and earns every dime, to get his team clicking at the most important time of year…by the way our IT factor/difference maker hasn’t played the past two games…stop f****** hating just because you never have had any type of success in your own life, and it makes you feel better to justify your stupidity to all us die hards who live and die by our team.

    • TXwildcat57
      4:02 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      callitlikeiseeit: you are the true definition of a b**** … you hate on anything associated with success because you never worked hard enough to earn anything for yourself. You probably blame all your problems on others. I’m truly callingitlikeiseeit from your BS post

    • check
      9:03 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      You go, TXwildcat57! Applauding you from Indiana!

    • Blublood41
      8:06 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      You do realize the SEC was the best conference in America right? If not the best then right there with the ACC.

    • BigBlueNationDude
      12:45 pm March 11, 2018 Permalink

      Agree. Hilarious how sensitive ppl are when you speak logic

  6. Duuuuuude
    7:53 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

    Looks a little like Lavar Ball in the top center of the photo.

    • check
      9:05 am March 11, 2018 Permalink

      Yeah. Was this supposed to be a Lavar pic or BBN? ?