By LARRY VAUGHT
Before Kentucky played its first exhibition game in the Bahamas Wednesday night, SEC Network analyst Seth Greenberg shared his feelings about John Calipari’s team.
“Kentucky is Final Four good, national championship good,” said Greenberg. “This game is a fact-finding mission to see how they react. This is their starting point, not the ending point.”
Kentucky raced to a 13-0 lead but actually fell behind 44-43 in the second half before regrouping and winning 85-61 behind 19 points and seven rebounds from sophomore Nick Richards.
“He’s not the same player,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said about Richards after the game.
Freshman Tyler Herro had 16 points while freshman Keldon Johnson had 11 points and seven rebounds. Sophomore P.J. Washington had 10 points and six rebounds while E.J. Montgomery had eight points and six boards.
Freshman guard Ashton Hagans had three first-half steal, five rebounds and seven points while freshman guard Immanuel Quickley had five points, five rebounds and four assists.
Transfer Reid Travis had just four points but grabbed 14 rebounds.
“Reid has just gone to work on the interior here. Everybody else is getting a little tired and he just goes to work,” SEC Network analyst Dan Dakich said during the second half,
Quade Green had five assists and five steals but just two points. He was 0-for-6 on 3-pointers.
Overall UK was just 2-for-20 from 3-point range — and remember this is a team John Calipari believes will be a much better shooting team. Quickley hit UK’s first 3-point try of the game and then Brad Calipari hit the last one.
Herro was 0-for-3 from 3-point range while Johnson and Washington were both 0-for-2.