Calipari: SEC tourney way to get Kentucky ready for NCAA play

Derek Willis (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

NASHVILLE — In case you didn’t know it, Kentucky coach John Calipari emphasized again Thursday that any team in the SEC Tournament could beat the Cats.

But he also admitted the SEC tourney was useful for his team, something he does not always say.

“I’m emphasizing some different things that we want, in this postseason, what we want to look like. And I always come back to: This tournament is our way of getting ready (for the NCAA Tournament),” the UK coach said. “This is about, how are we getting in a frame of mind of how you’re going to have to play in another week.”

Kentucky plays Georgia this afternoon in the SEC Tournament quarterfinals.

The Cats only practiced about 45 minutes Thursday and Caliipari said if UK keeps winning it likely will not practice again until the tourney ends.

“We didn’t have much film because we didn’t know who we were playing, so the only film that I put up was some film of us offensively of what I liked and this is what we’re trying to get to. I wanted them to see us at our best, so there were some clips in some games that we really got some great movement and yet attacked the basket and got to the rim. I just wanted them to see that,” Calipari said.

“Now today Georgia played every possession zone. They played every possession zone. They played two possessions against us last time zone. So now do they come out and play zone? I don’t know. I don’t know. And that’s why walking in there you don’t know what a coach is going to try to do.

“I think Georgia’s in (the NCAA Tournament). I can’t imagine when they’re talking about some of these other teams being in. Then Georgia’s in. But, you know, they’ve done it with Maten out. They’ve done some good stuff.”

 

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