A Great Night in the career of Josh Harrellson

Midnight Madness approaches swiftly and with it comes one of the most anticipated seasons of Kentucky Basketball in a while (since 2009-10?  1995-96?).  The next 6 months will bring us plenty of shots, defensive stands, games, and Calipari zingers to talk about, but before we kick off the next season I would like to take this time to reflect back on one of the most impressive and beloved individuals to ever suit up for the Cats - Josh Harrellson.

In particular, let's go back to the fateful night of March 25 when Harrellson stood mano a mano with Jared Sullinger.  Harrellson played a brilliant game that night: 17 points, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks, 7-9 from the field, 3-3 from the line and anyone watching that game could see that he gave Sullinger everything he could handle on both ends of the floor.

Actually, saying Josh gave Jared everything he could handle is understating things.  Dramatically.  In fact, Josh dominated Sullinger in every facet of the game, owning him so thoroughly that Sullinger should be paying rent.

Defense?  Harrellson had that in spades.  Here's how Sullinger performed when guarded by Josh and when he was guarded by everyone else:


Defending Sullinger FGM FGA FTM FTA Blocks TO Steals Points Wilsons
Harrellson 3 8.5 1 2 1 1.5 0 7 1
Everyone Else 4 5.5 6 6 1 2.5 1 14  


Against Harrellson, Sullinger shot a pathetic 35.3% - a figure that looks even worse when you consider how close to the basket all his shots were.  Josh also blocked a shot and forced Sullinger into 1.5 turnovers.  And of course, there was this:


Josh Harrellson plays dodge ball with Jared Sullinger (via AWReezy)

Harrellson got the better of the matchup on the offensive end as well.  Here's how Josh performed when he was guarded by Sullinger as well as how the other UK players performed against him:


Sullinger on Defense FG FGA FT FTA Blocks TO Steals Points Wilsons
Harrellson 4 4 2 2 0 1 0 10 0
Everyone Else 0 3 2 2 1 0.5 1 2 0


Josh was perfect from the field, perfect from the stripe, and only committed a single turnover.  To be fair, Sullinger did do an effective job against other UK players.


The great game that Josh played that night looks even more impressive to my eyes when broken down like this.  Throw in the fact that Sullinger might very well have been the #1 overall pick in the draft had he declared and it looks even better.

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