So, since John took the reins last time, it looks like I'l be leading the charge with the Kentucky recap. Also, this will more than likely be the last recap for a while, since we're only planning to recap games against quality opponents. The Heels' upcoming schedule gets easier through the exam period (@Penn, @Rutgers, Nicholls St, UCSB, Nevada, Valparaiso, etc etc). The average KP Rank of the next 6 opponents is 181, so it looks like we'll be slated to recap against when UNC hosts the Golden Flashes of Kent St (#37) on January 2nd. Now, to the recap.
Wow, Danny Green, Danny Green, Danny Green. That is literally all the Heels need to go from good to great. As long as one roll player (ROLL OUT!) (Green, Ginyard, Thompson, Frasor) steps up when the opposing team focuses all of their attention on Tyler. And, at least for the time being, Tyler hasn't seemed to have figured out how to pass out of a double/triple team, so the fact that someone steps up is more important now, when Tyler assisting buckets isn't happening automatically (if at all). I noticed this as well; Tyler had a lot of trouble dishing after getting the ball in the low post against the Wildcats. This was a large contributer to the high percentage of free throws we took this game; when Tyler got the ball, he took it up, most of the time resulting in a foul. Tyler shot 12 free throws to eight field goals.
Other than Danny Green stepping up, UNC took care of the ball against a team that has, thus far this season, built their defense around causing TOs. The Heels only had 13 turnovers in a game where there were 76 possessions. Other numbers looked similar to the Ohio St game (holding the opponent to 25% OR while posting a +35% OR rate), which seems to indicate that the Heels are doing the little things well, the things they had seemingly forgot how to do against weaker competition (SC St, ODU, BYU). Hopefully this 2 game shift will prove to be a trend that will be continued for the rest of the season. BYU weaker competition? Really? I mean, they're not as good as we are, but they're a solid team, and Plaisted really did a number on us. (Ok, so BYU isn't necessarily weaker, but we played a far worse game against BYU, rebounding and defense-wise, and got away with it, maybe it was the neutral floor) One other thing; we didn't have nearly as good on-the-ball defense against Kentucky as we did against Ohio State, but the Wildcats have much better shooters on their team than Ohio State does, so an uptick in opponent field-goal percentage was to be expected. We'll leave you with Danny Green's stat line for the night.
Green, Danny. 8-11 FG, 2-4 3-pt FG, 2-2 FT-FTA, 2 OR, 4 DR, 2 TO, 1 B, 1 S, 20 Points in 24 Minutes.