In his time at Memphis, Calipari made a living with long, lean, athletic forwards who could defend multiple positions and create matchup issues on the offensive end. Players such as Robert Dozier, Shawn Taggart, and Wesley Witherspoon all had good years under Calipari's leadership.
Now Calipari has another player in that mold in Poythress. The 6-foot-8 and 210 pound Poythress can step out on the wing and make threes or play closer to the rim like a true power forward. His athleticism is impressive, his skills are improving, and he seems to always play hard.
For Kentucky, which has gone away from the dribble drive offense some recently, a guy like Poythress fits in perfectly.
By winning a tough recruiting battle over schools like Florida, Memphis, and Vanderbilt, the Wildcats have the kind of match up problem needed from the forward position to make things hard on opposing defenses.
While the Kentucky Wildcats don't have the top recruiting class in the country right now, they do have three of the best athletes at their position. At shooting guard Archie Goodwin attacks the rim as well as any player, and is an elite athlete. Willie Cauley might be the most athletic center in the country with his ability to run the floor and block shots, and now Poythress gives the same kind of bounce and explosion as either a big small forward or a stretch power forward.
Having three prospects with that athleticism and skill, it will allow Kentucky, with a capable point guard, to get back to having more of a true dribble-drive offense which Calipari was so successful with during his time at Memphis and his first year at the school.
Just as important though as Kentucky getting an elite talent like Poythress which will help them get back to their bread and butter on offense, is the fact that they had to two beat out two of their key in-conference opponents to get him.
By ensuring that neither Florida nor Vanderbilt, two teams that are right there with Kentucky in the SEC East, landed Poythress, the Wildcats kept the balance of power and talent weighted on their end of things.
It is always easier to win with the most talent on the floor, and by landing Poythress, Calipari kept things in his favor, and now he might be winning games with the offense that he helped to popularize more than any other.
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