I think one of the most underrated individual performances in UK history was Patrick Sparks against Alabama in 2005. That team, which would go on to the Elite 8, was struggling mightily with a ranked ‘Bama squad (remember those days?) and Sparks basically won the game himself. He finished with 7 threes, 26 points overall and the Cats went on to win the SEC Championship. Well, this team is struggling too and I think it is time Malik Monk had an elite game in a road contest. In conference, Monk has done the following:
at Ole Miss: 34 points, 11-16 fg, 5-7 3p
at Mississippi State: 14 points, 5-14 fg, 0-3 3p
at Tennessee: 25 points, 7-19 fg, 3-13 3p
at Florida: 11 points, 4-14 fg, 3-7 3p
COMBINED: 21.0 ppg, 42.8% fg, 36.6% 3p
LAST 3 GAMES COMBINED: 16.6 ppg, 34.0% fg, 26.0% 3p
Against Ole Miss, Monk was strong. But Kentucky was winning big that entire game. It’s a lot easier to have a strong game when you are way ahead. In his last 3 conference road games, his shooting percentage has plummeted from everywhere on the floor. And not surprisingly, those were each tough games, with UK losing 2 of them. It’s time for Monk to put it together for a big game in a tough contest, which I expect the Alabama game to be. Maybe I’ll be wrong and the Cats will blow them, but if it is a tight game, I want to see elite Monk again. So channel your inner-Patrick Sparks and bring home a performance for the ages in Tuscaloosa.