Uk men's notes

Kentucky-Chattanooga notes: Teague's game pleases Calipari

Davis dug in versus physical team

jtipton@herald-leader.comDecember 19, 2011 

Kentucky Coach John Calipari lauded the point guard play of Marquis Teague in the Wildcats' victory over Chattanooga on Saturday night.

Teague equaled a career high of eight assists while committing only one turnover.

"I thought he had control of the game," Calipari said of Teague. "He got the ball where he wanted. Defended pretty well. Much better than he had been defending, which we have zeroed in on (with) him."

Teague improved his assist-to-turnover ratio to 35-to-9 in the last six games.

'Let's just bea vicious team'

In lamenting how inadequate he found Kentucky's response to Chattanooga's physical play, Calipari said:

"I look at us right now and say, 'OK, you know, what are we going to have to do to take this to another level?' What do we have to do to get guys to understand, let's just be a vicious team, let's go out and fight.

"We are just not that right now."

Ice Teague

Given his assertive drives to the basket against Indiana and poor perimeter shooting in recent games, Teague expects opponents to make him prove he can make outside shots.

"Yeah, they'll probably continue to do that," he said. "Go under (screens) since I haven't hit them lately."

In the last three games, Teague has made one of 10 three-point shots. He's 3-for-17 from beyond the arc in the last five games.

In that five-game span, he's made 20 of 56 shots overall (35.7 percent).

Coach is always right

After the victory over Chattanooga, Calipari lamented his team's unwillingness to mix it up physically.

But the Chattanooga coach said Calipari didn't really mean it. The UK coach was simply trying to stoke his team's interest.

So which spin doctor was correct?

"I'm going to go with Cal," Teague said as reporters laughed. "We're still going for rebounds one-handed and not diving for a few loose balls."

Or is he?

Calipari said he needed to do a better job concentrating his displeasure.

"One of my many, many, many flaws is when I get mad at one or two guys, I end up mad at all the players," he said.

Calipari found some of UK's players were not as willing as he'd like to stand up to a physical challenge.

More angry than ever

Teammate Anthony Davis said Terrence Jones will wreak vengeance on doubters.

"Terrence really worked hard to prove people wrong," Davis said after UK beat Chattanooga. "The finger slowed him down."

Jones dislocated a finger on his shooting hand early in the game. He's listed as day to day, leaving his status in doubt for the Samford game Tuesday.

The injury against Chattanooga "made him even madder," Davis said of Jones. "He's going to come out in the next game with even more vengeance."

Holding his ground

While not entirely happy with how Chattanooga set a physical tone, Calipari noted how freshman Davis held his ground.

"He wasn't pushed," Calipari said. "And then he rebounded every ball. He could have had 20 rebounds. ... I mean, if I had left him in a few more minutes, he would have had 20."

Said Davis of not getting pushed around: "It makes the game a lot easier. Just stay low. Hold your ground."

Thirty-three threes

Chattanooga Coach John Shulman acknowledged his surprise that UK did not answer in kind to his team's physical play.

"They didn't want any part of our double (teams in the post) in the first half," he said. "... It surprised me a little bit."

Chattanooga had to double-team the low post aggressively because it could not match up with Kentucky one-on-one around the basket, Shulman said.

The tactic gave Kentucky open shots on the perimeter. UK made a season-high 12 three-pointers in a whopping 33 attempts.

The 33 attempts matched the most taken by a Calipari-coached UK team. His UK team of 2009-10 took 33 three-pointers in a regular-season game against Arkansas and again in the NCAA Tournament against East Tennessee State.

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