John Calipari on Kyle Wiltjer’s defense

From the UK transcript:

Q. The problems you key with Kyle on defense, does that concern you? You thought he would be better at this stage or no big worries

COACH CALIPARI: No, I don’t have any worries because if he doesn’t guard, he’s not playing; it’s real simple. I told him, I said it to him in front of the team, “If this is what other teams do to us, the minute I see it, if you don’t stop the guy, do something to stop him, then you’re out, and I’ll play Willie or I’ll go small and go Alex at 3, and we will go three guards.”

I was going to do that tonight, and I didn’t, because I want to get Willie time. I need Willie to be out there. But I almost did that and went small. But Kyle is capable. But, listen, here it is: You stop the man or you’re sitting. Would you figure it out? You better try like heck, and I told him after, “Kyle, you know I love you, but you’re not playing and guarding that way; I’m just telling you now.”

Q. Question regarding Kyle Witjer’s play …

COACH CALIPARI: He’s got to anticipate, he’s got to be rougher, he’s got to be nasty. You don’t want to be nasty, you’re probably not going to play. Doesn’t mean dirty, it means playing people before angles and all those things, but I’m going to tell you, playing that way is really, really hard. It’s easier to loping up and down and letting the guy catch it and then trying to play him, obviously that’s not getting it done.

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