2019-20 Season Analytical Writings

Cats Wrap Up 2019-20 Regular Season at Florida

Barely a week ago, the Cats moved into a 3 game lead over a trio of SEC teams tied for 2 nd place with a reasonable expectation that the Cats would walk into Gainesville for the season finale against the Gators with that huge 3 game lead, but on Tuesday night, the Cats let Tennessee escape Rupp Arena with an 8 point win despite a Kentucky 17 point lead after the first few minutes of the second half. This collapse has produced speculation, indeed guesswork about how this could have happened given the 8 game winning streak that ended with this second half collapse.

This will be the second meeting for the Cats and Gators in 2 weeks since the Cats handed the Gators a 6 point loss at Rupp Arena. Each team has won 2 and lost 1 since that meeting. FLORIDA brings its 19-11, 11-6 record into their Senior Day encounter with the Cats. FLORIDA's season ANE is 0.209 ppp against a schedule strength of 0.121 ppp and an average tempo of 66.5 possessions per game. Kentucky's season ANE of 0.207 ppp against a schedule strength of 0.086 ppp at an average tempo of 68.8. The ANE analysis based on these season profiles points to a 3 point Florida win, 71-68 in a game played with 68 possessions.

It is intuitively clear than not all 3-point games are created equal. The quality of any win depends upon the final margin, the strength of the opponent, and the venue of the game.

The table provides tools to evaluate this game's final margin considering the relevant factors. This table separates game outcomes into three ranges, red, tan, and green. Over the years, Calipari's strongest teams play more of their games in the green range than in the red range over the course of the season. Conversely, Calipari's weakest teams play more of their games in the red than in the green range. A game ANE moves toward the red zone with smaller margins (or losses) and toward the green zone with larger margins.

Game Summary:

About an hour before tip off, Coach Calipari announced that Ashton Hagans is not in Florida with the team for this game. Coach Calipari starts Tyrese Maxey, E. J. Montgomery, Nick Richards, Immanuel Quickley, and Keion Brooks against FLORIDA. Johnny Juzang, and Nate Sestina will come off the bench.

FLORIDA controls the opening tip and wastes no time getting on the score board first. After a Kentucky turnover, the Gators move on top 4-0 and following a Kentucky miss by Nick Richards, the Gators hit a 3 point basket to move on top 7-0 forcing Coach Calipari to take a quick timeout with 18:20 left in the first half. During the timeout, Coach Calipari inserts Johnny Juzang for Keion Brooks and Johnny Juzang gets an assist with a pass to Nick Richards on the inside. After the Gators go back on top by 7, the Cats get back to back baskets by Immanuel Quickley and Tyrese Maxey on awkward shots in the lane to pull within 3, 9-6, at the under 16 media timeout. In the second segment, the Cats trim the Florida lead to 2, 11-9 on a 3 point basket by Nate Sestina, but the Gators answer with their second 3 point basket of the game to lead by 5, 14-9, at the under 12 media timeout, and the Gators will have a pair of free throws after the break.

In the first 2 segments, each team has had 13 possessions. There has been only one offensive rebound (Florida) and no second chance points. The Gators have made 3 turnovers vs 2 for the Cats. The gtrs lead is based on 2 more made baskets, including 2 from outside the arc. 1 for 2 from the line, and the Gators's 3 rd 3 point basket following another UK turnover extends the lead to 9, 18-9, and a pair of free throws gives the gtrs a game high 11 point lead, 20-9. The Gators maintain the 11 point lead, 25-14, at the under 8 media timeout. Immanuel Quickley picks up his second foul, both offensive foul turnovers to send the game to the break and give Florida possession to begin the 4 th segment. The Cats claw back to within 4 points on a jump hook by E. J. Montgomery and a pair of free throws by Tyrese Maxey following another Florida turnover. Following another Gators turnover, the Cats pull within 5 points, 20-25 on another pair of free throws by Nate Sestina after grabbing an offensive rebound. The Gators stop the 6 point Kentucky run with a pair of free throws, and move back up by 9 following a Kentucky missed shot. The gtrs maintain the 9 point lead, 34-25, at the under 4 media timeout with 2:36 left in the first half and the Cats in possession.

Gators lead by 10, 40-30, at the half.

The Cats scored 30 points on 30 possessions, 1.000 points per possession, and FLORIDA managed their 40 points on 31 possessions, 1.290 ppp. The Cats made 42.3% of their first half shots, including 4-6 from outside the arc. FLORIDA managed to make 55.6% of their first half shots, including 5-8 from outside the arc.

The Cats committed 6 turnovers in the first half to 5 turnovers by FLORIDA.

The Cats made 4-4 free throws (100.0%) and FLORIDA made 5-6 (83.3%).

On the Boards, Florida controlled the glass with a 15-11 advantage, and both teams grabbed 4 offensive rebounds, which produced a 6-4 advantage for the Cats on second chance points. The Cats secured 26.7% of their misses and allowed FLORIDA to grab 36.4% of their misses as second chance opportunities.

Second Half:

Kentucky opens the second half with a baseline hook shot by Nick Richards, but Immanuel Quickley picks up his 3 rd foul in the first minute of the second half. Then Immanuel Quickley gets a second chance 3 point basket to trim the Florida lead to 5, but the Gators waste no time moving back on top by 10, 45-35. Nick Richards trims the lead back to 8 points at the under 16 media timeout with 15:19 left in the game and the Cats in possession.

With 14:46 in the game, Coach Calipari gets a technical foul but the Gators miss the free throw. Nick Richards commits his 3 rd foul with 14:36 left. With 13:35 left, Immanuel Quickley commits his 4 th foul, and his 3 rd charging foul. Florida makes the Cats pay with their 7 th 3 point basket of the game to post the largest lead of the game, 13, 50-37. Kentucky is down to all of its available players with Immanuel Quickley and Nick Richards both on the bench in foul trouble. With 12:36 left, Coach Calipari gets the heave with his second technical foul. The first technical was not on Coach Calipari, so Coach Calipari remains on the bench. After converting both technical foul shots, Florida gets another pair of free throws on a foul by E. J. Montgomery, and the Florida lead balloons to 15. After a miss by Tyrese Maxey, Florida gets another basket and is fouled on the shot to send the game to the under 12 media timeout with the Gators on top by a game high 17, 56-39 and Florida will have the free throw after the break to possibly extend the lead to 18.

The Cats pull to within 12, 60-48, on a 3 point basket by Tyrese Maxey, and Florida takes a timeout with 9:23 left. Immanuel Quickley fouled out with 9:04 left. The Cats manage to pull back to within 10 points, 64-54 on a 3 point basket by Johnny Juzang, and the Cats will have the ball after the under 8 media timeout. Nick Richards makes a pair of free throws to trim the lead back to 8 points. Following a Florida turnover, the Cats pull to with in 6 points for the first time since the first minute of the game. The Gators stop the Kentucky run and Nick Richards gets back to the line where he made only 1 of 2 to pull within 7, 66-59. The Cats get a defensive stop, and trim the lead to 5 points, 66-61 with 4:26 left in the game. Florida takes another timeout.

After the timeout, the Cats gets a stop and Nick Richards scores to cut the lead to 3 points. Nick Richards then pulls the Cats within 1 point with a baseline hook. Cats take a timeout with 1:19 left, down 3, 70-67. Keion Brooks pulls the Cats back to within 1, 70-69. With 39 seconds left, the Gators lose the ball out of bounds, but the officials say it went off a Kentucky player. The Gators turn the ball over on a shot clock violation with 27 seconds left. Coach Calipari burns Kentucky's final timeout. E. J. Montgomery gets a second chance basket to give Kentucky their first lead of the game, 71-70 with 11 second left.

Florida turns the ball over with 4 seconds left. Florida fouls Nick Richards with 3.4 seconds left. Nick Richards missed the front end and Florida burns its last timeout with 3.1 seconds left. Florida misses from long range and the Cats win 71-70 after trailing by 18 points late in the second half.


UK scored its 71 points on 58 possessions (1.224 ppp) for the game, and FLORIDA scored its 70 points on 59 possessions (1.186 ppp).

Kentucky won the battle on the boards 30-22 and won the battle on the offensive glass 14-5. Kentucky had a 21-6 advantage on second chance points. FLORIDA had an offensive efficiency of 1.085 ppp on its 65 59 first chance possessions and 1.200 ppp for its 5 second chance possessions. UK had 0.862 ppp on its 58 first chance possessions and 1.500 ppp on its 14 second chance possessions. With respect to the offensive rebounding, UK grabbed 45.2%of its misses as offensive rebounds while FLORIDA was able to convert 23.8% of its misses into bonus possessions with offensive rebounds.

UK hit well from the free throw line in this game, making 9-11 [81.8%]. FLORIDA made 13-17 [76.5%] for the game. Field goal shooting for UK was 27-57 overall [47.4%] and 8-13 from long range [61.5%]. For FLORIDA, their field goal shooting from inside the arc was 18-34 [52.9%] and from long range, FLORIDA hit 7-14 [50.0%].

The Cats committed 9 turnovers, one for every 6.4 possessions. The Cats forced 10 FLORIDA turnovers, one for every 5.9 possessions.

Next Game On Schedule: Friday afternoon in the first game of the SEC Tournament Quarterfinals against Thursday's winner of the #8 and #9 seeds, to be determined later today. The post season now begins.

Submitted by Richard Cheeks


Submitted by Richard Cheeks



Go Back
To Cats Clinch 2020 SEC Championship Against Auburn

Copyright 2020
SugarHill Communications of Kentucky
All Rights Reserved