Kentucky coach John Calipari felt the need to clarify his remarks to ESPN that Doron Lamb may be Kentucky’s best player next year. “Here’s what I meant, “Calipari said, “Doron’s not the biggest guy we have. He’s not the fastest guy we have, not the quickest guy we have. He’s not the greatest with the ball. What he is, as you saw in the Connecticut, he has a feel for the game, and he lets it come to him.”
While referring to any player on a team as talented as Kentucky’s to such an ambiguous title as “the best” will probably generate some discussion, I certainly don’t think the third year Wildcats coach needed to say much, if anything, in the way of clarification. Doron Lamb shot a sizzling 48% from three-point range last season (61% in NCAA Tournament play) while scoring the third most points on the team.
In his second season his minutes, scoring and role on the team should only broaden. Calipari’s first team at UK, which included arguably the best group of freshmen ever assembled, couldn’t get the job done in post-season. The weak link was outside shooting.
This coming season boasts a freshman class that rivals Calipari’s first-season effort and adds Darius Miller (44% 3-pt shooting) and a more experienced Doron Lamb. Had Lamb played on Calipari’s first team, the Cats may very well have brought home the title that year.
Calling Lamb the best player on the team may have been a stretch but a strong argument could be made that he may be the most important player on the team.