By LARRY VAUGHT
John Calipari just can’t help himself.
He knows how much Kentucky fans enjoy coming to the SEC Tournament, especially in Nashville, and what winning the tournament means to the Big Blue fans.
Yet once again on Friday he downplayed the importance on the SEC Tournament.
“I know people get mad and our fans go there (to the SEC Tournament). It’s almost an obligation because so many of them go to the tournament, but the whole point for me is, that tournament you’re playing three games back-to-back-to-back,” Calipari said.
“I mean, what does it really do? Well, if you’ve got to win the games to get a good seed (in the NCAA Tournament), win the games. But, the reality of it is, our season is about building toward March, being prepared for every kind of team that we can play.
“Building every player on your team because you don’t know who’s going to step up in a game.”
Remember a week ago Calipari was prodding guard Immanuel Quickley to join the 25-point club at UK that Ashton Hagans, Tyrese Maxey, Nick Richards and EJ Montgomery had reached this year. Immanuel Quickley went out the next day and had 26 points against Florida and came back with 30 points against Texas A&M. Now Calipari wants more.
“We now have the five guys that have scored 25. Can we get a sixth?” Calipari said. “It would be nice to have one more just so you know because you don’t know what’s going to happen in this thing.
“And that’s the whole idea is how do we advance? How do we give ourselves a chance?”