7:00PM KFC Yum! Center

Fresh off a thrilling and I want to emphasize the word thrilling win over North Carolina on Saturday, our Wildcats turn right around to face a 10-1 Louisville team tonight. It really goes unsaid the impact this rivalry has on both programs. 

Malik Monk

Malik Monk. Malik Monk. Malik Monk. 

Okay I’ll quit, but my oh my young man. In one of the most inspiring performances by anyone to put on a Kentucky uniform.. He dropped 47 points while shooting 18-28 and 8-12 from 3PT land. Single handedly kept us in the ballgame Saturday and ultimately won the game for the boys in blue. Now averaging over 21 points a game, expect this kid to once again shine tonight in the Commonwealth matchup. 

De’Aaron Fox & Isaiah Briscoe

We didn’t forget about you boys, Fox had a great game as well finishing with 24 points and making a few huge shots. My only concern with Fox was sometimes rushing and taking the unnecessary shot. Ultimately he played a great game and combined with Monk to provide 71/103 Kentucky points. 

Isaiah Briscoe was quiet… But very effective. Given the naked eye test, it almost seems he was nearly invisible. The numbers say otherwise. He finished 4-6 shooting, and ended with 10 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists. Mister Do-It-All. Very valuable player who clearly knows his role in the offense and continues to be a leader for the Cats. 

The Big Men/My Only Concern

Kentucky has the best backcourt in college basketball. Not even up for argument. 3 great guards who can beat you in any aspect of the game. My concern comes from the men down low. I’m a big Adebayo fan. In 19 minutes Saturday he posted 13 points and 7 rebounds. Which is his season average. Wenyen Gabriel has concerned me so far. His numbers don’t jump off the page but he is a good basketball player. It’s just sometimes he seemed to be ineffective and lacks the scoring and rebound ability of an elite post man. The big men accounted for 21 points Saturday (Adebayo, Gabriel, Humphries, Willis), clearly a cause for concern. They’ll get a pass however for Monk playing out of his mind.

By the numbers 

  • Kentucky is 8-1 against Louisville in the Calipari era. 
  • Louisville offer only 2 players scoring over 10 points per game, being G Donovan Mitchell and G Quentin Snider. 
  • Kentucky brings 4 players averaging over the 11 points Donovan and Snider offer. Monk, Fox, Adebayo, and Briscoe all average 12 points per game or higher. 
  • Jaylen Johnson from UL shoots an absurd 62 percent from the field while averaging 9.5 PPG and 8.1 Rebounds. Expect Johnson to cause Kentucky chaos on the glass. 
  • Edrice Adebayo leads all Kentucky big men in Points/Rebounds/ and blocks per game. 
  • Louisville will start the game tonight carrying 10 players on their roster that have played in all 11 games, a weapon that can make the Cards very dangerous. 

Bold prediction

Kentucky hits 12 or more from outside, and Malik Monk follows up his 47 point game by scoring 33 or more tonight. 

Final Prediction

Kentucky 91-Louisville 83

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