Kentucky’s PJ Washington tells why team is skipping spring break
Five takeaways from Kentucky’s interview session devoted to player awards and previewing the SEC Tournament:
1. Reid Travis participated fully in Monday’s workout, more than one player said. How did he look? Like his old self.
2. Keldon Johnson acknowledged that he had to be a more mature presence on the court. He said he’s learned to accept whatever calls are made and any adversity that comes his way.
3. PJ Washington expressed appreciation for being voting to the All-SEC first teams in balloting by coaches and media. But he had no problem with Tennessee forward Grant Williams being Player of the Year. His focus, he said, is on a different goal: the national championship.
4. Tyler Herro and Johnson spoke of their two-man chemistry in games. It’s not unusual to see them make well-timed passes to each other that result in scoring opportunities.
5. Ashton Hagans broke from standard operating procedure. He did not deny that UK had a preference in opponent in Friday’s quarter-finals. The Cats want to play Alabama. The Cats haven’t forgotten losing at Alabama in the opening game of the SEC schedule.
No. 4 Kentucky vs. Mississippi or Alabama
What: SEC Tournament quarterfinals
When: 7 p.m. EDT Friday
Where: Bridgestone Arena in Nashville
TV: SEC Network
At Bridgestone Arena in Nashville
Wednesday’s first round
Missouri vs. Georgia, 7 p.m. (SEC)
Texas A&M vs. Vanderbilt, 9:30 p.m. (SEC)
Thursday’s second round
Florida vs. Arkansas, 1 p.m. (SEC)
Auburn vs. Missouri-Georgia winner, 3:30 p.m. (SEC)
Mississippi vs. Alabama, 7 p.m. (SEC)
Mississippi State vs. Texas A&M-Vanderbilt winner, 9:30 p.m. (SEC)
LSU vs. Florida-Arkansas winner, 1 p.m. (ESPN)
South Carolina vs. Auburn—Missouri-Georgia winner, 3:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Kentucky vs. Mississippi-Alabama winner, 7 p.m. (SEC)
Tennessee vs. Mississippi State—Texas A&M-Vanderbilt winner, 9:30 p.m. (SEC)
The Associated Press and the league’s coaches named their All-SEC teams and award winners on Tuesday:
First Team — Daniel Gafford, Arkansas; PJ Washington, Kentucky; Tremont Waters, LSU; Quinndary Weatherspoon, Mississippi State; Grant Williams, Tennessee
Second Team — Jordan Bone, Tennessee; Jared Harper, Auburn; Admiral Schofield, Tennessee; Breein Tyree, Mississippi; Chris Silva, South Carolina
Awards — Player of the Year: Grant Williams, Tennessee; Coach of the Year: Kermit Davis, Mississippi; Newcomer of the Year: Tyler Herro, Kentucky
First Team — Daniel Gafford, Arkansas; PJ Washington, Kentucky; Tremont Waters, LSU; Breein Tyree, Mississippi; Quindarry Weatherspoon, Mississippi State; Chris Silva, South Carolina; Admiral Schofield, Tennessee; Grant Williams, Tennessee
Second Team — Bryce Brown, Auburn; Jared Harper, Auburn; Nicolas Claxton, Georgia; Tyler Herro, Kentucky; Keldon Johnson, Kentucky; Skylar Mays, LSU; Terence Davis, Mississippi; Jordan Bone, Tennessee
All-Freshman Team — Kira Lewis Jr., Alabama; Isaiah Joe, Arkansas; Andrew Nembhard, Florida; Tyler Herro, Kentucky; Keldon Johnson, Kentucky; Naz Reid, LSU; Reggie Perry, Mississippi State; A.J. Lawson, South Carolina
All-Defensive Team — Donta Hall, Alabama; Daniel Gafford, Arkansas; Ashton Hagans, Kentucky; Tremont Waters, LSU; Chris Silva, South Carolina
Awards — Coach of the Year: Kermit Davis, Mississippi; Player of the Year: Grant Williams, Tennessee; Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Skylar Mays, LSU; Freshman of the Year: Keldon Johnson, Kentucky; Sixth-Man of the Year: Hassani Gravett, South Carolina; Co-Defensive Players of the Year: Tremont Waters, LSU; Ashton Hagans, Kentucky