For the second game in a row, Kentucky guard Jamal Murray played like an All-American, but he could not get much love from John Calipari afterwards.
The Wildcats coach admitted Murray’s shot selection — which netted the freshman 24 points on 8-for-14 shooting against Georgia — is “getting better” but still has a ways to go.
One moment was seared into Calipari’s mind.
“He had the one baseline flip,” Calipari said. “He couldn’t help himself. It’s like crack cocaine. ‘I gotta do this.’ And he flipped it under. No chance of making it.”
Those comments came three days after the coach expressed frustration with Murray’s monster day against the Gators.
“Jamal went on a drive right and had a layup, but he had to finger roll it. He had to do the Iceman — whee!” Calipari said while miming the shot on Saturday evening. “The problem was it was an airball. Why would you do that?”
Murray is now averaging 29.5 points and seven 3-pointers made over the past two contests.
Those numbers could’ve been higher if the guard had not been “casual” on a pair of late long-range attempts Tuesday, according to his coach.
“You’re gonna get two or three, four more baskets!” Calipari said. “With five minutes to go, I was gonna leave you in for another minute or two.”
The Wildcats (18-6, 8-3 SEC) are currently a half-game behind LSU in the regular season conference race. They travel to Columbia, S.C., for a date with South Carolina on Saturday (noon ET, ESPN).