We have arrived at the first major test for the Kentucky Wildcats. The 'Cats and the Washington Huskies have a showdown at the Lahaina Civic Center tonight for the right to go on to the Maui Invitational finals.
Game details are as follows, courtesy of UKAthletics.com:
|Game Notes||Kentucky Game Notes | Washington Game Notes|
|Date & Time||Tues., Nov. 23, 9:30 p.m. ET|
|Coverage||TV: ESPN |
Live Video via ESPN3
|Location||Lahaina Civic Center |
|Maui Invitational||With a win, the Cats next face the winner of Connecticut-Michigan St. at 10:00 p.m. ET Wednesday in the Championship Game. With a loss, the Cats will face the loser of Connecticut-Michigan St. at 5:00 p.m. ET Wednesday for third place.|
It goes without saying that the Wildcats must perform better tonight than they did last night versus Oklahoma. Washington is a deep, powerful team that is highly ranked and torched Virginia last night. The Wildcats are going to need their "A" game against the Huskies.
What Kentucky must do to win:
- Share the ball;
- Attack the rim at every opportunity. The DDM should be very effective against the Huskies due to Kentucky's bigger backcourt.
- Defend. UK defended very well against the Portland Pilots, but they regressed against the Oklahoma Sooners.
- Continue to take care of the basketball. Kentucky is averaging under 16% turnovers, which is really good for this young of a team.
- Continue to win the battle on the offensive glass. It is not a Washington strength.
What UK can do to lose:
- Play pathetic transition defense like they did last night;
- Lose their cool. I expect Washington will try to push the young Wildcats around. How Kentucky responds to that will tell us a lot.
- Fail to guard the three. This is a very good shooting team, as the Virgina Cavaliers found out to their woe.
Here we go, 'Cat fans. A big game at last. Win this, and Kentucky has to be considered a legitimate top-ten team. Right now, it's all guesswork as to how good this team is.