By LARRY VAUGHT
If you watch Kentucky play it seems like every time Kentucky needs a clutch 3-pointer, sophomore Immanuel Quickley makes it.
Guess what? His teammates expect him to do that.
“I ain’t going to lie to you. Every time I pass it to him I just turn around and go down the court,” UK point guard Ashton Hagans said. “I just start smiling because I already know he’s hitting it.
“That’s Immanuel. He’s been in the gym a lot. He’s way locked in this year and trying to prove something.”
He’s doing it.
If Nick Richards has competition for the SEC’s most improved player it could well be Quickley. He leads UK with 14.9 points per game to go with 4.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. He’s hitting 40.8 percent (42 of 103) from 3-point range and an unreal 92.5 percent (111 of 120) at the foul line
“If Quick is shooting it, I’m getting back on defense because I know it’s going in,” freshman Tyrese Maxey said.
Quickley hit two second-half 3-pointers at Vanderbilt Tuesday that helped UK rally to beat the Commodores.
“The last two were out of bounds and then the next play was for him. We started the game and I thought I was running stuff to Immanuel but I ran the wrong side of the floor, so it ended up being to Tyrese. So we started 8-0, 5-0. We were supposed to be going to the other side of the floor and then it’s to Immanuel,” Calipari said.
“That’s who I’d like to start a game with because I have a lot of confidence in him and he’s tougher, just physically tougher. And he makes his free throws.”