UK Men's Basketball

Thumbs up/Thumbs down: How Kentucky beat UCLA

Kentucky Wildcats forward Willie Cauley-Stein, left,  Karl-Anthony Towns (12) and Derek Willis, right, erupted as Devin Booker hit a three pointer as  the team held UCLA to 7 first half points as #1 Kentucky played UCLA on  Saturday December 20, 2014 in Chicago, IL. Photo by Mark Cornelison | Staff
Kentucky Wildcats forward Willie Cauley-Stein, left, Karl-Anthony Towns (12) and Derek Willis, right, erupted as Devin Booker hit a three pointer as the team held UCLA to 7 first half points as #1 Kentucky played UCLA on Saturday December 20, 2014 in Chicago, IL. Photo by Mark Cornelison | Staff Herald-Leader

Recapping Kentucky's 83-44 victory over UCLA on Saturday at the CBS Sports Classic in Chicago:

GAME SUMMARY

Kentucky won by 39 and it was not that close. UK rolled the Bruins from the outset. The first platoon pitched an impressive shutout and UK led 16-0 less than four minutes into it. UK was on fire and UCLA looked starstruck. The Bruins missed their first 17 shots, and it was 24-0. It was a stunning 41-7 at the half, when UCLA made three of 37 shots for 8 percent.

THUMBS UP

■ It is hard to imagine Kentucky ever started a game more impressively. The team that played the first half looked unbeatable.

■ Led by Aaron Harrison and Devin Booker, UK is starting to find the range from outside.

■ Defense and unselfishness start with attitude. That is what is making this team look special.

■ Nice homecoming for Tyler Ulis — seven rebounds, seven points, six assists.

THUMBS DOWN

■ CBS analyst Greg Anthony said Rick Pitino coaches Kentucky. He did come back with a nice apology, saying the UK performance had him at a loss for words.

■ UCLA. A dark day for a program with such an illustrious history.

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