Not to toot my own horn, but I wrote about WCS after the UL loss and how important he is becoming to the success of this team going forward. No, his stats aren’t anything to write home about, but his heart and drive sure are. At the beginning of the season, the guy with the motor, I guessed, was going to be Poythress, but Poythress takes turns vacillating between MKG and the “bad” Terrence Jones. But one thing was evident with the evisceration of Eastern Michigan and that is this: Noel, WCS, and Poythress must start every game from here on out. No matter the outcome of the games. No matter the amount of struggle while they are working out their sets, plays and chemistry. We have our own, veritable “Big 3″ and that is incredible.
Having Wiltjer and Mays coming off the bench was an unexpected tandem of reserves to see but Calipari, apparently, sees the value of building up Post real estate and running the Offense from the inside-out. And the Inside-Out offensive scheme isn’t typical for a Calipari team because his prior stable of stud PG’s were dynamic and creative enough to dictate pace. This team is the exact opposite. Now, don’t get me wrong, Ryan Harrow is the back-court key to the success of this team, but is not widely considered on par with the likes of John Wall, which isn’t a fair comparison but Wall is the standard used by most. So, Harrow is the key that drives the vehicle. Last year, the vehicle was a Ferrari. This year…M1 Abrams.
I am not going to parse stats of Noel, WCS, and Poythress starting together against EMU, but their sheer presence and versatility is unmatched against any team in the country. Of that, there is no debate. Consider the impact Noel had against EMU, yet attempted only 4 shots; or Poythress’s aggressiveness and craftiness around the basket and in the mid-range game; or WCS and his steady, playing within himself, double-double.
Using this line up ensures that our front court plays to their strengths and none bear the full weight of post scoring/defending. It may not look the prettiest, but it is the most effective. By starting those three, the opposing team is automatically set on its heels because they have to play for three different styles of offense and defense with the “Big 3″ all playing together. That’s nearly impossible to contend with. And with WCS hitting his FT’s, his confidence will continue to grow in his game away from the stripe.
As Calipari continues his one-on-one sessions with Poythress and others, this team will hit their stride by their third SEC game so if they are going to go down in the SEC…it better be “quick, fast, and in a hurry like.”
The “Big 3″ eventually worked out OK for the Miami Heat. The “Big 3″ you will likely feast your eyes on for the remainder of the season, the positive returns have been instant and will sustain as the season rolls on.
On, On, U of K.