Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Five Things to Love about Kentucky Basketball


In the spirit of Valentine’s day, here is a list of five to love about recent events in and around Kentucky basketball.  The list covers tomorrow’s match-up verses the Florida Gators, as well as the NBA All-Star weekend that tips off tonight at 9:00pm on TNT.

1. The Young Cats Show Signs of Improvement

Feb 12, 2014; Auburn, AL, USA; Auburn Tigers guard K.T. Harrell (1) takes a shot against Kentucky Wildcats center Dakari Johnson (44) during the second half at Auburn Arena. The Wildcats beat the Tigers 64-56. Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Feb 12, 2014; Auburn, AL, USA; Auburn Tigers guard K.T. Harrell (1) takes a shot against Kentucky Wildcats center Dakari Johnson (44) during the second half at Auburn Arena. The Wildcats beat the Tigers 64-56. Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

 

Granted there have been times when the Cats seemed to not shine as bright as others, but they are still showing signs of improvement.  Take in account that Kentucky’s scoring comes largely from freshmen, it goes to shows just how much this season’s team could potentially grow.  Not to mention, Alex Poythress has stepped up in a big way and seemed to put the team on his shoulders in the last few games.  Also, as of late, center Dakari Johnson has turned into an absolute beast.  If Willie Caulie-Stein is having an ‘off night,’ then Johnson is the man to go to.  Johnson has helped the team with key blocked shots and has became a reliable scorer as well.

2. The Cats Take on Florida Tomorrow

NCAA Basketball: Kentucky at FloridaOne of the marque match-ups in the Southeastern Conference, between the Kentucky Wildcats and Florida Gators, will take place tomorrow in front of the home crowd at Rupp Arena.  The game will be televised on ESPN as part of ESPN’s College GameDay.  Fans can enjoy the pre-game show at 9:00am as the ESPN GameDay crew does their pre-game analysis before the game.  The game itself will start at 9:00pm.   According to ESPN Stats and Information, Kentucky has a 60% chance of winning against the Gator according the Basketball Power Index or BPI.

3. Tomorrow the Cats will Wear Throwback Uniforms against the Gators

Nike Hyper Elite Dominance uniforms 2014. All rights remain to Nike, Inc.

Nike Hyper Elite Dominance uniforms 2014. All rights remain to Nike, Inc.

These uniforms bring back memories and stories of past teams that have played for Kentucky.  It is great to see Nike embrace that tradition of the selected schools that they chosen to wear them.  Hopefully tomorrow, the Cats will play like teams from the past and come up a with a win against a very tough Florida Gators team.

4. Former Cats Participating in NBA’s All-Star Weekend

Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

NBA All-Star weekend kicks off tonight at 9:00pm on TNT as Anthony Davis and Terrence Jones participate in the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge.  Tomorrow kicks off at 3:00pm on NBATV with DeAndre Liggins participating in the D-League all-star game, then followed by John Wall at 8:00pm as he competes in the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest on TNT.  With all the festivities wrapping up Sunday with Wall and Davis competing in the NBA All-Star game at 8:00pm on TNT.

5. Rupp Arena

courtesy NBBJ+EOP

courtesy NBBJ+EOP

Looking at what Rupp Arena could possibly look like, it looks awesome to say the least.  This would definitely take Kentucky Basketball to a whole other level.   The $310 million-dollar project is said to start as soon as next year and could be completed as soon as 2017.   The renovation is expected to bring buzz to downtown Lexington and around Kentucky Basketball.

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