Kentucky-Chattanooga Postgame Quotes

Dec. 17, 2011

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Kentucky Head Coach John Calipari

Q. How did you play tonight and how is Terrence's (Jones) finger?

COACH CALIPARI: We just played okay. I thought some of the guys played well. I told them, what happens to me, one of my many, many flaws is that when I get mad at one or two guys, I end up getting mad at the whole team. And it's not fair, because we had some guys that played well today. We did.

But the guys we needed to play and do the things we needed to do, did not, and I wasn't real happy. This team forced us to shoot a lot of 3s. We are not a team that shoots 33 3s. You have to take those. I thought Marquis Teague played well.

And Terrence (Jones) dislocated his finger; so I don't know what that means, how long he'll be out, but he did dislocate it. He tried to come back and play but just couldn't do it.

Q. Talk about Anthony Davis a little bit, what a huge game and doing little things, too. He was all over the place in the passing lanes and stuff.

COACH CALIPARI: Anthony (Davis) played well. You know, there was a couple of plays where he didn't hold his position, but they do a good job. What they do, defensively, is they trap the post and then try to get you to throw crazy passes. We had good spacing, and when we didn't, they did steal the ball.

The second thing they do is they squeeze on pick-and-rolls; in other words, the man that goes to screen the ball, their man just jams you way high, and you've got to go low and be in a good position.

We worked on it for two days. Guys walked into the game and just got pushed to the top of the key and they weren't ready to play. Anthony held his ground, which is why Marquis Teague got the shots he got, because he held his ground. He wasn't pushed. And then he rebounded every ball. He could have had 20 rebounds today. I mean, if I had left him in a few more minutes, he would have had 20.

Q. On what finger Terrence Jones injured …

COACH CALIPARI: I think it was his pinky finger, I think. I didn't ask to be honest with you.

Q. On much did Terrence's (Jones) (injury) effect his play …

COACH CALIPARI: You couldn't tell. You couldn't tell. But he tried to play. I've got to give him credit. He tried to go back in and fight.

Q. How important is this period, and what are you trying to get out of this?

COACH CALIPARI: We'll probably go twice tomorrow. We'll go once or twice Monday and we'll play Tuesday. We'll go once or twice on Wednesday, and we'll play Thursday and then they go home for three days and when we come back, we start back at it. There is no classes. So if we need three times in one day, we'll go through. It's where we really buckle down and zero in on what we have to do.

What I liked was after a week of really zeroing in on Marquis Teague, I thought he played well. I thought he had control of the game. He missed some shots. But the reality of it is, he probably took two shots he shouldn't have taken. Missed both of them, or he would have been 5-for-11 from the floor; now all of a sudden it's a little different game. But he had eight assists. One time he controlled it, he got the ball where he wanted. Defended pretty well. Much better than he had been defending, which we have zeroed in on him.

We just have a long way to go. I look at us right now and say, okay, you know, what are we going to have to do to take this to another level? What do we have to do to get guys to understand, let's just be a vicious team, let's go out and fight, we are just not that right now.

That game got -- again, and we had some guys that just ran for the hills. You can't. You've got to want a rough game. You've got to want to be rough. I want it to be that way. And you can't count on Anthony Davis to get every rebound. That's what happened.

But Michael Gilchrist played pretty well. When you talk six assists and 17 (points) and eight (rebounds), he played pretty well, without taking a whole lot of shots.

Q. Is this one of those things that could possibly build on itself with Terrence (Jones); that he dislocates a finger, doesn't have a bounce back game, and carries on?

COACH CALIPARI: I hope not, because he's one of those guys we are counting on. So I hope not. I think he'll be fine. You know, and we'll see. I mean, will he be able to play Tuesday -- I don't know. I really don't know.

Q. You talk about -- it looked like Anthony (Davis) tried to take a couple of charges and the guys were trying in some respects.

COACH CALIPARI: Those were all charges in the end, on us, those same plays. That's why I said I wish you guys were in Indiana. They all would have been blocks up there instead of charges on us. Sliding, jumping in the air, body, chest to chest.

Q. You talk about the guys wanting to play rough --

COACH CALIPARI: If you want to win, you have to figure it out. We had guys in Indiana at the end of the game that had a will to win, and they were coming up with plays and playing through bumps and getting balls, and we had other guys that weren't. You have to have a team full of guys. And the good news is they were not getting on each other up there, and here a little bit.

One of the things this team isn't doing is, too much of the stuff is coming from me. And I'm telling you, until this team gets empowered, they are not going to be as good as they need to be. If everything has to come from the bench, if everything has to come from what I'm saying, instead of guys doing what they are supposed to. I mean, we left the corner today five times. Now, if you're anywhere near my bench or if you have ever come to a practice, we do not leave the corner. From the first day of practice to every game we play that is all we talk about is we are not leaving the corner. We left the corner five times today. That stuff I have a right to be angry about.

Not coming off with balls where guys won’t stick their nose in there, I have a right to be angry about that. ‘Well, let him stick his nose in there, but I am not going to put my nose in there because I might get hit.’ We can’t be that way.

The thing that they are going to try to do beat us is that they are going to try to hit 3s, try to beat us at the foul line and they are going to try to rough us. Is that what you would say? If they can get away with fouling us a 1,000 times and the officials don’t call it or they rough and push and shove. That is how they have to play. Well, we have to say, ‘We want you to play that way. Play rough. Grab and rough and hold on every possession like you do because it is not affecting us.’ Right now it affects us.

The other thing is, maybe they do hold the ball, when then you pressure. You don’t back away from people and today we were a little bit better at that. You make them play a little bit.

Like I said, it is good to get that one under the belt after that one last weekend and now it is a quick turnaround and we will play Tuesday and see what happens.

Q: On Kyle Wiltjer’s play and what that does to the offense?

COACH CALIPARI: He did some good things. And again, I told him, all I am concerned with you is defensively and rebounding the ball. You play offensively. If I give you 8-10 minutes, play offensively, take shots. If you don’t have them, pass. Like he had one and the stepped through he didn’t need to take. The guy had him. He one dribbled pulled and the guy had him and it wasn’t there. Everything else he took was wide open.

I would also like to get him in the post some and with the 2-point shot. You don’t have to shoot all 3s, but we were wide open.

If a team is going to do that to us and we shoot 33; you have to understand, we have been making five, six 3s a game. We doubled that today because of how they played. If you play us like this team played, we'll shoot 3s. Hopefully we'll make a few more, and we are not used to shooting this many. Doron Lamb made them in the second half. Darius just makes two of seven; so we have to get him on track because he's shooting about 25 percent for the year right now from the 3. He was a 45 percent 3-point shooter, but we will see.

Q. Your thoughts on how Doron (Lamb) played, the shoots he was able to make?

COACH CALIPARI: He did make some 3s in the first half. I thought he played hard. He's trying. We need him to speak more. This team doesn't talk enough, and it starts with him. When you don't talk, you're into your own self. You must talk on offense and you must talk on defense, and that's what we are trying to get him to do.

Q. When you talk about being at the free throw line and 3-point line, why is it so important?

COACH CALIPARI: Because you are going to get everyone blocked around the basket; if you try to drive on us, they are going to block it. Indiana, they know we have got to make 3s, we have got to create good shots from 3s, and we have got to get to the foul line. Anthony Davis fouls, so we get to the line, because shooting 2s, we are holding people to about 25 percent.

So when you talk to my players -- now think about this: Darius (Miller) went under a pick-and-roll to give a guy a 3. With this team? The only thing (that can beat us), shooting 3s, what were you thinking? Well, it's going to be harder. You may get bumped. You can't -- you can't -- no. Pick-and-roll; why would you go under if the guy is going to shoot a 3? We are going to make him dribble it in; we talk about it every day, but I'm going to tell you, a bunch of young kids, I'll give this to you.

Going over the 5.6 against Indiana five times, here is what we do. Two days ago, not just today, but yesterday, I went over it on the court. We did it live. We shot the free throw, we went up two; we screwed it up again. We did. We screwed it up again. What it tells you is, we've got freshmen; what you're saying is not necessarily what they are hearing.

So instead of me trying to be tricky, and think, well, if I don't foul here, they are going to say, why didn't he foul. Play your man, and let's make him not score, how about that. Instead we have got two to give when they get near halfcourt, we are going to foul -- not yet. We are not ready for that. And there are things happening in the game because they are so young, that they are going to make mistakes, you and I will look at and say, he didn't know -- no, he didn't.

But let me say this: I like my team, we have got a good team. We want a team with 33 percent 3s, and I'm not happy. We had 13 turnovers and 17 assists, out-rebounding them, I'm not happy. Because, this team should be one of those teams that every night out, you've got to strive to be that. Thank you.

FastScripts by ASAP Sports

Kentucky Players

#25, Marquis Teague, G

On how he thought he played …
“I think I played pretty well and under control. I ran the offense and tried to get everyone involved.”

On what the difference is now in his play since the start of the season …
“Just slowing down. I have more experience with it now, and I feel more comfortable.”

On what John Calipari told the players after the game …
“He just told us that we have some people not playing hard and not going after loose balls. We were playing sloppy a bit and giving up some shots. For the most part I thought we played pretty hard and pretty well.”

#14, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, G

On Terrence Jones
“He’s going to be fine. He is our leader on the court. He is going to be fine.”

On what this team needs to get better at …
“It was just the whole team in general. We are a young group and we are still learning. I think we are going to get better and better.”

On what makes him happy …
“I am always happy on the court. I just want to win a basketball game. That’s it.”

#33, Kyle Wiltjer, G

On if this week seemed extra long coming off the loss to Indiana …
“It’s always tough coming off a loss. We just wanted to get in the gym and work hard. This week helped us to prepare and for the games coming up.”

On what John Calipari meant when he said he wants to see more hustle …
“Just coming up with loose balls on defense and getting rebounds. Also being tough down low on defense.”

On if ‘hustle plays’ can be worked on in practice …
“Yeah, it’s just having that defensive mentality. I mean, a lot of my career I have had the defensive mentality, so I just have to focus on defense and hone down on what coach wants to see, which is guys in the right spot at the right time.”

#23, Anthony Davis, Forward

On Terrance Jones’ performance...
“He’ll be fine. Terrance (Jones) worked really hard in practice to prepare for this game and to prove people wrong but early in the game he had a problem with his finger so that kind of slowed him down. It kept hurting and bothering him the whole game.”

On how prepared the he felt the team was for this game…
“We were really ready. Coach Cal really got us prepared in practice. We really came out strong. We wanted to come out and just play.”

On Coach Cal’s comments that the team needs to play rougher…
“We do have to play rougher. Loose balls, guys on the floor, and taking charges, it’s all about toughness. We need to become even tougher.”

Chattanooga Head Coach John Shulman

On the game plan going in to the game…
“We knew they were going to come out ready, we needed to have some toughness and be ready early. They lost their No. 1 ranking; it’s time to panic up here. We understood that they would come out like this we just didn’t handle it very well. It’s an awful lot to ask. We had a great first possession but they’d throw it up to 12 feet and (Anthony) Davis would dunk it, that’s hard to guard. I thought we didn’t panic; we methodically got back in it. We didn’t shoot the ball very well, we got decent enough looks. When your smallest wing is 6-foot-8 out there, we understand they are very good.”

On Kentucky’s depth…
“He really doesn’t have a bench. What a special environment and a special place to play. They beat Penn State by 40 something; they’ve beaten people to death. I just never got the feeling that we were beaten to death. We made them make shots and they made shots, if Kentucky has got to make three’s to beat us and they did that. If (Doron) Lamb goes 5-for-10 I can deal with that, I just wasn’t ready for (Michael Kidd-) Gilchrist to go 2-for-3. Davis is the projected No. 1 pick in the draft.”

On the lack of weaknesses of Kentucky…
“Indiana made unbelievable shots to beat them. They beat Indiana nine out of ten and they beat North Carolina in here. This is probably the best team in America. We got down 18-2 to the best team in America and battled back and kind of got back in to it. I thought we had opportunities in the first half to cut it to 12 or 14. I’m tired of right hooks being thrown at us, we haven’t had a whole lot of good stuff happen to us and we still battled. We came in to this environment and battled, that’s not easy, it wasn’t easy with the right hook that was thrown at us yesterday afternoon but we came in here and battled. We are going to get better and we are going to stay the course and there is a reason why in seven years we have won four regular season titles. We are going to stay the course, do what we are supposed to do and we are going to get better. There are a lot of times you come in this environment and don’t leave with any positives; I think we are leaving with positives.”

Chattanooga Players

#3, Keegan Bell, G

On the start to the game…
“We came out a bit lethargic and they are a good team. We knew that they were going to come out and try to rough us up a little from the beginning and we did not respond very well. Once we made it past the four-minute mark I feel that we came back and did some solid things.”

On Kentucky’s play…
They are a very good basketball team. Coach (John) Calipari has done a very good job with this team. We can look at this on the positive side because we feel that we played a Final Four caliber team. It was tough playing against a team of that length, but I’m still proud of our guys for staying calm no matter what was happening and trying to do what we were supposed to do.”

#20, Drazen Zlovaric, F

On the early deficit …
“If you go down 18 to 2 to a team of this caliber, it’s very hard to comeback. They have about five guys on their team that can be first round draft picks or even lottery picks. So that just shows the talent level of their basketball team.”

On playing against the length of Kentucky …
“It’s very difficult to play against a team so long because they can block so many shots. We were just going to stick to our game plan and keep attempting to take it to them. They are a very good team.”

On using this game as a learning tool…
“I can’t say that I am satisfied. We made some mental mistakes and turnovers that we shouldn’t have made. Our execution wasn’t the best. We did some positive things that we can take away from this game, but we definitely could have played better.”