Blue/White Postgame Quotes

Oct. 28, 2009

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Head Coach John Calipari

On John Wall's play ...

"He was good today, I thought. I thought he played well. This stuff for me is trying to figure out all these guys. I have talked a little bit about body language. Some guys are getting mad at themselves and they just have to get a little more upbeat. I like that we went with Darius and he had that stretch (of good basketball) - that is how we play. Someone just gets going and we just keep going at them. But I thought that John was good today, but again, till I watch this tape (I won't really know.) We got a long way to go and please understand that the way that I have always coached is this: I try to get the offense right and then I go to defense and it has never really hurt my teams. The main reason is that I want my players to be confident offensively and not get demoralized because the defense is ahead of the offense, which usually happens. So you realize that we have had nine days of practice and yesterday was the first day that I really, really zeroed in on defense. We have done some defensive things, but that was a totally defensive practice."

On Patrick Patterson and his role on this team from here forward ...

"He needs to be more vocal out there, but what I liked was that he was able to play this offense yet was still so alive under the basket. Some people worry that you play this way but never get to the post; you will learn how to get to the post. And we have to figure out ways to get him to the post. I thought that he did a good job and got himself there. He shot a high percentage. Didn't you like seeing him shooting threes? Aren't you amazed at his skills out on the floor where he can catch it at 20-feet and then drive it and shoot a layup and go by people? He is talented, but folks we are not close to where we need to be. But I think that you got a mental picture of what we were trying to do. We couldn't press for more than three minutes and we were exhausted. That's why I tell them if you are pressing and running you are not going to be able to play 35-40 minutes. You just can't do it."

On if he has always done offense ahead of defense and if it is a little unconventional ...

"Well, especially when you are putting in this offense which is all new, I don't want to work on defense in the preseason. We just don't. I do all offense and try to get the guys in the frame of mind that they have to play. Then we come at them with defense, hopefully by that time they are having fun where they will really get after it and figure out how to guard. Our last practice, we went two-and-a-half hours and two hours of it was defense. That was out last practice and it was all skill work, all fundamental work and all creating an environment. You have to first of all take team pride in defense and everybody is taking pride, not just four guys but everyone. You have to take enjoyment out of playing defense where you just love it. You love getting down in the stance and locking people up. The third thing is that you have to have discipline. Which means you have to stay in the stance and play the entire possession and talk and help, we don't have any of those three right now. Is it still October? Thank goodness."

On the crowd and the environment for an intra-squad scrimmage ...

"Well, I am excited that they are excited. All I can tell you is that I wake up every morning and say, "I am the coach at Kentucky. Is this not the greatest thing ever?" I wake up every morning loving it and I see their excitement and I am excited. We are going to have to perform on the court now. What I do like is that we have a good mix of players. They are all good kids trying to do the right things and playing off one another. They want to be coached. They are all coachable and if you have been in our practices you see that they want to be coached and they are listening and want to be told how to play."

On Eric Bledsoe's and John Wall's play together ...

"I hope so. Those two on the court together is great. When you think about it, when Eric was playing with John, Eric had six assists and no turnovers. So Eric and John help each other when they are out on the court together and I thought that they played better when they were together than they did when they were separated. How about that? They are going to have to play at times by themselves and they can do that. We just have to get to that eight or nine-man rotation as to who is who and people are still fighting for spots and positions."

Kentucky Players

#3, Darnell Dodson, G

On how the game was tonight...

"It was a lot of fun, playing with the team and playing at game speed, seeing where we are really at."

On how he thought he played ...

"I thought I still could have done some things better on the floor, both offensively and defensively. But I think I had a good game overall."

On where he thought the team stands as of now...

"I think we stand pretty good right now. It's still early in the season, so we still have some things we need to work on, but I think we did pretty good."

On playing with Wall and Bledsoe as point guards...

"It's good playing with them. They like to get the ball out and run the floor, and they create shots for other people."

#11, John Wall, PG

On how he thought he played tonight ...

"I think I played good, I made a couple turnovers. I could have turned around but I think I played and got my teammates involved. We just came out here trying to get our chemistry down pat and go over the plays we have been working so hard on in practice and see how we play with each other. We still have a lot of work to do to get to where we want to be but I think we did pretty well tonight."

On if he attacked the basket as much as Coach wants ...

"We tried to attack a lot but he wants more of it. We practice it so much the defense has gotten so good at collapsing; we have to pass it out to our shooters. We hope every game we make shots because if they make shots the defense is going to leave them open and give us a chance to get to the basket."

On how much fun the team was having out there ...

"It's been fun ever since we watched the "Remember the Titans" movie. Our chemistry has been better and you could see it out on the court tonight that we had a good time together but we still have a lot to work on."

#54, Patrick Patterson, F

On playing on a team with so much talent ...

"We're all confident in each other and our playing time. We just want to win. Anyone can play out there at anytime like you saw today. My teammates are knocking down shots, Josh (Harrellson) is playing well all the way down to Daniel (Orton) just everyone providing minutes and providing points. Playing time won't be affected as long as we win. Everyone is just going to come to play and be ready."

On the amount of smiles on the court tonight ...

"There are a lot of smiles, freshmen jumping up and down getting the crowd into the game. People are smiling, having fun, joking around - just having a lot of fun out there."

On what athleticism can do for this team ...

"We have great athleticism, length, speed, and quickness. I think it's going to help us out especially on defense. We have to play good defense and stop the point and our athleticism should make that easier and people coming of the bench can keep that level."

On if he likes shooting threes ...

"I love it. As long as they keep going in, I will keep shooting them."

#24, Eric Bledsoe, G

On preparing for Monday's exhibition against Campbellsville...

"I think we need a little more work on offense and defense. We still have things to learn about. It's an exhibition game, and we aren't going to play like it's a practice. We want to go out there and have fun."

On the scrimmage...

"We had a lot of fun with the crowd and the whole team taking shots. Everyone was out there doing what they can do. The crowd was wonderful. They were into it, and when they have momentum, you do too."

On the difference between playing with and without John Wall...

"There was a big difference. Playing without John, I had to do everything. I had to spread the ball, create defense and pass. When I had John, I could play defense, come up the court, and let John bring it up. If someone is trying to guard John, they have to handle me. If someone is trying to guard me, we have John. I hope we play together a lot, but that's Coach Cal's decision."

#15, DeMarcus Cousins, F

On learning and implementing the defense...

"You have to go so hard the whole time, and you can get winded playing like that the whole time. You have to know your spot. A lot of it has to do with who has the ball and where they go with it. You have to read each other. If you stop moving, you are wrong."

On John Wall and Eric Bledsoe playing together...

"They can read each other's mind. They practice together and they live together. I always told everyone that it would work out fine, and tonight just shows that."

On Patrick Patterson...

"He can do it all and he is very versatile. It's tough [to guard him], because Pat is skilled. People did get to see how skilled he is last year. Playing him in practice and pick up, I can see his skill."