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Calipari said three years ago that he would not go back to Maui


Why is it suddenly national news again that John Calipari is not a fan of the Maui Invitational?

When his second UK team played there, he made it clear he would not be going back. And nothing has changed.

What advantages are there for UK and Calipari? He’s won a national title without going to Maui. He’s had No. 1 recruiting lasses without going to Maui. He’s produced No. 1 overall draft picks as well as first-round draft picks without going to Maui.

It’s the same with overseas exhibition trips. Calipari took a UK team to Canada three years ago and my guess is likely will do that again in 2014 rather than taking a longer, more tiring trip to Europe.

Kentucky can get all the marquee games it wants in November or December without having to go to Maui at Thanksgiving and potentially wearing players out.

No doubt Maui can be fun for fans — and some teams.

But it makes perfect sense to me why Calipari said what he did three years ago about not going back and why I don’t get why anyone is surprised now that he has not changed his mind.

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  1. LindaS

    I don’t blame him one bit, especially about European trips. I could not afford to go to Maui and I am sure it is very expensive for the team. That is a long distance to be cramped in a hot small gym.

    1. Juan4UK

      I agree about Maui. I’ve never paid one bit of attention to the team logistics until the last time we went. Not one bit. But after thinking about the pre and post tourney scheduling, and then about the travel needs y, I totally get it.
      I will say, I would like to see them go on a Euro tour over the summer. I can find no down side to that. It’s over the summer, the players get an experience that is bound to bond them in a very different way. And with Cal’s system of young people there is no downside to getting them together as a team as early as possible. The Euro-trip was a very key part of Duke’s season a couple yrs ago. Maybe not the tourney, but certainly played a big part in the beginning and middle of the season to get the guys up to speed. I like the Euro trip (or foreign). In fact, I would like to see a 3 yr limit on abroad travel, and if teams keep it in North and South America (and central) I wouldn’t mind them going every two years.

  2. Scott

    Maui is a bad fit for what Cal’s doing here, with the perpetually young teams and annual roster turnover. 3 games in 3 days very early in the season, with no practice time in between for corrective action, is a recipe for reinforcing bad habits.

  3. King Ghidora

    It’s a LONG way on an airplane to Maui especially if you’re 6’11” trying to sit in a seat designed for someone 5’8″ or smaller. People actually die from being cramped up like that too long. No way you’d ever get me on a plane that far unless I was planning on staying at least a year. My cousin lived there for years. It really isn’t worth it IMO. You have nice beaches and palm trees and volcanoes. You can get nice beaches and plam trees in Florida and along the Gulf Coast. And you can drive there in a car if you want to go. Of better yet charter a big bus with actual comfortable seats.

    1. Juan4UK

      I get what your saying King G, but nice beaches and Palm trees is a big over simplification.

  4. Anonymous

    Wasn’t the floor slippery? That would spook me!

    1. Juan4UK

      that was that PR Hotel Ballroom gym I think.

  5. Larry Pup

    He’s the coach. Case closed.

  6. MickintheHam

    Larry, thanks for asking the question. I was baffled when this appeared to be news to some ofmour fans. Where they paying so little attention when Cal arrived here that they missed it?

  7. Terry Orcutt

    I agree with Coach Cal!!

  8. Terry Orcutt

    I agree with Coach Cal!!!

  9. Gene

    I personally believe that this entire dust-up is a result of two “writers”, in Lexington, having a personal agenda when it comes to Calipari.
    Don’t know which paper is involved but since there is only one in the town I guess that’s self explanatory.
    The first “writer” should need no introduction. The second ? Read the rag and come to your own conclusions.

    1. Juan4UK

      that’s because those writers get free trips to Maui every time we go. Someone else’s dime, and most likely they get to go on the team charter plane. So, much better travel conditions for them. More leg room, more lax atmosphere on a plane where you know everybody. They just want their vacation paid for by the LHL.

  10. King Ghidora

    I avoid that rag like the plague. That writer is just ticked he won’t get a paid trip to Maui himself. You can bet on that.

    Just like Cal’s decision not to go back to Assembly Hall, I defer to his judgement and I agree with the reasoning.

  11. BD WELLS

    Those two are a lot of things, but they are NOT WRITERS!

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