Mulder gets his opportunity and makes most of it

Mychal Mulder battles Alec Peters. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Mychal Mulder battles Alec Peters. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

During Kentucky’s loss to UCLA on Saturday, senior Mychal Mulder did not play. All 40 minutes, he sat and watched.

On Wednesday night against Valparaiso, he got in for 16 minutes and made the most of it. He went 4-for-10 from the field and had nine points, seven rebounds, two assists, one blocked shot and no turnovers.

“It was fun. That was a really good team. We were looking forward to the competition, and an opportunity to bounce back. We’ve been waiting to get back to competition and we’ve been working real hard in practice. We were happy with the results,” Mudler said after the game.

He said not playing against UCLA did not provide any extra motivation — but I’m not sure about that.

“I go into every game motivated, regardless of the (opponent). I was motivated in practice, kept working hard. I didn’t really let that bother me at all,” Mulder said. “If he (Calipari) thought the matchup just wasn’t good or whatever his thought process was on that, that’s his choice to make and I respect that.

“I was just ready for my opportunity, and when that came today I tried to make the most of it, as I do every time I get an opportunity on the court. Just moving forward, continuing to work hard in practice and prove myself of why I should play.”

Calipari said he had a playing rotation in mind going into the game that included Mulder being on the court at the same time as Isaiah Briscoe.

“Isaiah makes Mychal comfortable. Isaiah figures out ways of getting him shots he can make and Isaiah will talk to him through defense and help him. He just makes him more comfortable on the court. As we sub, when Isaiah Briscoe comes out, the next time he goes back in, I’ll usually put Mike with him,” Calipari said.

“Mychal was good, too. Mychal walked in the game and tipped a ball so that we could rebound and get a play. Then there’s not pressure on you. If you’ll defend, scramble, hustle and dive on the floor, you don’t have to make shots all the time.You can stay in the game. If you’re not going after balls, you’re getting beat on defense and you miss two shots, you won’t believe this. We’re trying to win. Then you can’t stay in the game.”

 

2 comments

  1. Mulder should have played in the UCLA game. The blame is all on CAL. I heard that Mulder’s father was so pissed off that he left the game at half time.

    Cal sticks with his elite players no matter what. Isaiah and Fox were throwing up bricks on three’s all afternoon, while Monk never even touched the ball for long periods in the second half.

    The second half comeback should have gone through Monk and Willis on the outside and Bam on the inside.

    We only lost by 5 points! Three baskets would have won the game for us. I put the UCLA loss completely on the coaching staff. Freshman players should not be running the show.

  2. I always thought Mulder should be playing more and I think he’s probably our2nd best shooter behind Monk as of now.

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