The 2019 Kentucky Louisville game was one of the most exciting matches between the schools in recent memory. Louisville is a team dominated by Seniors, and Kentucky was coming in with a two game losing streak, losing games to the University of Utah, and Ohio State at T-Mobile arena in Las Vegas last week.
Many felt this was a very pivotal game. Kentucky was ranked# 19 in the country and Louisville #3.
I believe it was the most complete game Kentucky played all year against a very good Louisville, team. They passed the ball well, and played with a tremendous amount of fight. Those who saw the game cannot say enough about Nick Richards. We were in all as he simply brought it every second he was on the court. Nick was on the radio star of the game show and made the comment, the team really game together and played for each other. He also said his body felt beat.
My thought was, Nick, that is how it is suppose to feel after every game. Will we look back and say this was Nick Richards, and this teams break out game? If they play like they did today it will be hard for anyone to beat them. I have more belief in the and talent of this team than most Kentucky fans. I believe Cal will have Cahlil Whitney where he needs to be by the end of the year and Johnny Juzango will be hitting threes and contributing also.
I can’t believe the number of people that claim to be UK fans that have been down on this team and Cal early this year. How many times do you have to watch Calipari implement his systems before you figure it out? Why must some continue to mouth off on social media about going to the NIT at the beginning of the year only to be exposed as the morons they are at the end of every year. It is funny, and we all seem to have UK friends like this. At some point you would just understand Cal has his systems and processes in place and they are proven. The guy loves his players and he understands for the team to become the best, each player has to become the best version of themselves. Coach Calipari knows what he is doing. Real UK Fans need to enjoy the journey, because we all know where we will be in March! I have found it interesting over the years that people without substance, rarely understand those that have it. Regardless, you are a Kentucky fan, and part of the deepest tradition in sports just trust Cal and enjoy the journey.
While I am on a little bit of rant. RYAN LEMON, I love Ryan, but he is the worst. Just because he has not grown as a human being since he was 18 years old, I think it is hard for him to wrap around the progress we all know these young men are going to make during their time with Coach Cal and the phenomenal UK basketball coaching staff. How many times do we have to see that the baseketball team we have at the beginning of the year is never the team we have in March?
Regarding the post game radio show, I told my wife a couple of weeks ago if Matt Jones doesn’t return and bring some kind of thought and reason back to this show, Ryan Lemon and his negative naysayers are going to destroy this post game show.
I guess some people just seem to live in a mind set of what have you done for me lately? They have no vision of the track record Cal has proven. I could really go down this path but I won’t for now. When it comes to the University of Kentucky Sports I just hope everyone remembers to thank the Lord every day for John Calipari and his family. Remember them in your thoughts and prayer. Since we are here, that goes for Mark Stoops and his family as well.
If I was Stoops I would have left and went to Florida State, no questions asked. I wouldn’t have stayed at Kentucky. I would have gotten as far out of the SEC football conference as possible and just rolled on. I am so thankful Stoops stayed and I think he is our coach for the long haul. It takes a lot of confidence and grit to be an SEC football coach especially in Kentucky and I appreciate him.
Ok, back to the Kentucky Louisville game.
VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE 2019 KENTUCKY LOUISVILLE GAME
John Calipari is 10-2 against Louisville since being hired at UK in 2009. Eight of those victories came against Pitino, and two came in the NCAA tournament — a Final Four win in 2012, and an upset two years later in the Sweet 16 that cemented Cal as U of L’s ultimate foil of the modern era. Few things about the Calipari era have brought Big Blue Nation more joy than his domination of our most hated annual opponent.
Not to mention that the two losses to Louisville have both come in games where his young Kentucky teams where playing in a true road environment for the first time. Saturday’s game was a battle as most expected. Kentucky did lead by as many as 12 points early in the second half before Louisville fault back tied the game and actually took the lead.
I was very impressed with the entire effort of the team. They played hard, made extra passes and looked phenominal against the #3 rated team in the country.
Kentucky junior Nick Richards scored seven points in overtime, including two free throws with 27.4 seconds remaining as the Wildcats closed out the decade with a 78-70 win over rival Louisville.
Tyrese Maxey had a game-high 27 points and was 4-for-5 from three-point range. Immanuel Quickley finished with 18 points, while Richards had a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
Kentucky had a chance to win at the end of regulation as Keion Brooks just missed a tip in off a Tyrese Maxey runner in the lane as time expired.
In overtime, Louisville drew first blood as Dwayne Sutton hit a three-pointer to give the Cardinals a 64-61 lead. An Ashton Hagans free throw and Quickley three pointer gave UK the lead at 65-64. But Louisville climbed back to take a 68-65 lead on a three by Jordan Nwora.
Did Kentucky Improve?
This came could have been the most important of the 2019-20 basketball season for the Wildcats. In Las Vegas
It seemed like they were closed, but just couldn’t quite get over the hump. I sincerely thought they weren’t ready
for Louisville yet and picked Louisville by 9.
When we look back on this game, I think it could have a lot of significance on the projectory of the remaining of the
year because how they played together as a team.
Ashton, ran the team well and had a solid performance that we have come to depend on and expect from him
every time out. 8 points, 8 assist, 3-4 from the line with only 2 turnovers against one of the best defensive teams n the county.
If he is not one of the top 3 point guards in the country, I don’t know who is.
Maxey and Quickly both scored their all time high point totals, and both played good defense, Quickly virtually shut down the number one scorer is the ACC. and course everyone is talking about Nick. Richards.
I think everyone in Big Blue Nation can never recall seeing the consist, engaged, intense, Nick Richards we saw Saturday. We have been waiting for his break out game for a few years, but something tells me, this was it. I know, we don’t like to get our hopes up, but really it was like the spurts of emotion we have seen from him from time to time over the years. I could have been the fact that it was Louisville. But I though I was looking at a Nick Richards whose flip had been switched. Time will tell.
The Most Athletic Play in the Game
The most athletic play in the game that I saw was at the end of regulation when Keion got to the rebound and tapped in for the win. How the ball cam out of the basket I do not know, but how Keion Brooks got to the ball and then got a shot pushed towards the basket was even more remarkable if you the watch the replay.
The amount of athleticism and balance it took to ever make that play happen was astounding. People think I am crazy when I say this, but I truly believe this is the most talented team Top – Bottom I have seen since Calapri has been here.
I am saying Top – Bottom. No there is no Davis, Wall, Towns, etc on this team, but there are more Shay Alexanders than most cat fans see. I see this entire team getting better and better throughout the year, and I expect them to be ready to battle for #9 in March if they stay the course and continue to understand how much they need each other.
I have no real concerns, there have been no injuries reported, so that is good. I just hope that Kahlil Whitney and Johnny Juzang are keeping their minds right and their heads up. If they do they are both going to have important games for us this year and great basketball careers. The talent is their, but they are young men, they have talent, work hard, and are going to be fine. Don’t we all wish we could go back and talk to our 19 year old self.
It is hard to think about what is really going through anybody’s mind at anytime especially a high school superstar that is sitting on the bench at Kentucky. I would guess that sitting on the bench is something very few high school kids come to Kentucky expecting to do.
What are they expecting to do when they come to Kentucky?
We all know the answer. “One and Done”
There is no question that the kids Kentucky recruits ALL HAVE THE TALENT TO PLAY IN THE NBA or they would have never been offered a scholarship. But it takes more than raw talent, some would argue that mindsets are more important than talent. Learning how to be a good team mate, learning how to be engaged every second you are on the court, and more importantly learning how to be accepted for who you are, while creating a vision of the person you can become and the positive impact you can have on the everyone around you.
Believe it or not even Kentucky basketball players have to deal with fear of failure and fear of rejection in their own ways within the UK Basketball Fishbowl. No coach in the world understand this like Cal. So my only hope is that Kahlil & Johnny stay engaged with Cal, because will help them maximize their talent during their time at Kentucky.
I hope nobody on this team feels one and done pressure. PJ Washington has proven that fact this year with his production in the NBA, Sometimes two and done makes more sense. Nick Richards looks like this will be the year that for some kids they understand even 3 and done works, not to mention all the seniors that will graduate from universities all over the world this year who will have their shot in the NBA.
I just hope Johnny & Kahlil, Brooks, and everyone on the team is trusting the process. Cal’s track record is Cal’s track record so I hope they are hearing him and blocking out all the distractions that you know are attempting to influence their mindset.