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Horn: Wall making more game-impacting plays

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MBSK 09_10 UK_Bama Web 42.jpgRemember just a short month ago when John Wall had that first, yet brief encounter with adversity when head coach John Calipari said he played "awful?"

Those comments were sparked by Wall's performance at South Carolina when, despite 19 points, Wall was outshined by South Carolina guard Devan Downey.

It turns out that performance wasn't enough to change USC head coach Darrin Horn's thoughts on Wall. Despite watching firsthand one of Wall's only subpar performances of the year, Horn raved about Wall's ability on the Southeastern Conference Coaches Teleconference earlier in the week.

"He's special. I don't think there is any question about that," Horn said. "I think what separates him and why he's so highly though of and he continues to prove that he deserves that is that he's not a guy that can just get 25 points. He's a guy that impacts every area of the game."

Despite a slight shooting slump over the last two games - Wall was a combined 9-of-27 from the field in wins at Mississippi State and Vanderbilt - Horn pointed to Wall's clutch plays late in the game to seal UK's victories.

Against Vanderbilt, Wall blocked a go-ahead 3-point attempt from John Jenkins in the waning seconds of the game. He also scored five points, including three key free throws, in the final 39 seconds of the game.

"He's had some huge blocks in recent games that have helped save games," Horn said. "I think that's great example of where his ability and his athleticism allows him to literally impact the game in every area. Ultimately that's what makes a player special. He's continued to show those things and show that ability and at the same time continue to improve in basketball things as well."

Collectively, Horn believes his team will see a different UK squad Thursday night than the one they saw a month ago in Columbia, S.C.

"I think you see continued growth (from Kentucky)," Horn said. "They've got a lot of young guys, obviously. They'll learning things, not only for the first time at this level but their whole program was in a transition level with it being Cal's first year. I just think you see their entire team, individually and collectively, continue to grow in basketball things. I think the win at Mississippi State is a great example of that. (They) really made some basketball plays and did some basketball things that you have to do on the road to win."

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1 Comment

Nice choice in pic Eric! :-)

Walter

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