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For a good portion of Tuesday night’s game the Kentucky faithful seemed like they had fallen asleep before the 9 pm tipoff. Honestly I’ve seen a more raucous crowd at funeral parlor. But fortunately Anthony Davis and the rest of Wildcats eventually got the block party started, giving the home crowd something to scream about.
Darius Miller opened the game with aggressive moves to the basket and one of the prettiest up and under moves in the lane you’ll ever see, getting the Cats off to a quick 8-0 lead. After the fast start the offense struggled to put points on the board. Fortunately, Kentucky had 8 blocks in the first half alone en route to holding the Razorbacks to 31 percent shooting, leading 37-21 at the break.
The block party continued in the second half with every Arkansas shot being taken under extreme duress. The offensive onslaught continued as well as UK shot an amazing 65% from the field in the second half to put the game out of reach. Kentucky wins 86-63.
I have to say I was a little disappointed that we didn’t get to see the standard Mike Anderson “40 Minutes of…uh...Hades” let’s say, that is always expected. Of course it is hard to set up a press if you aren’t able to score the basketball, but even when they were able to do so it usually ended up with a Kentucky dunk on the other end. I think after the trouble his teams have caused Kentucky over the years we owe him a good beat down.
Have you heard of Anthony Davis? Well if not, he’s pretty good. Davis had seven blocks on the night, giving him 89 on the year, breaking the single season blocks record held by one of my all-time favorites Andre Riddick. And the crazy thing is that there are still 12 regular season games left. At this pace he would be real close to breaking the SEC record held by Kentucky arch enemy of the past Jarvis Varnado from Mississippi State. Oh and by the way, Davis also had 27 points and 14 rebounds, while showing off an ever expanding offensive repertoire. He truly is an amazing talent.
Marquis Teague had arguably his best game of the season, dishing out a season high nine assists with only three turnovers in 36 minutes of action. He did a tremendous job of distributing the ball to his teammates, but also taking the opportunity to get to the rim when necessary. As I’ve said all season, the Cats don’t need Teague to be a scoring threat, they need him to run the club and take the scoring opportunities teams give him.
Next up for the Cats is a date with the Alabama Crimson Tide on Saturday at Rupp Arena. This will be a very physical game from the opening tip and it will be very interesting to see if Kentucky is able to run its’ offense effectively against a very formidable defensive squad. The Cats will need to be able to get open shots from the offense to get the victory.