Larry Brown: Kentucky Would Make the NBA Playoffs in Eastern Conference | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Friday / June 21.
  • Larry Brown: Kentucky Would Make the NBA Playoffs in Eastern Conference

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    Larry BrownHow good is Kentucky?

    Or how bad is the NBA’s Eastern Conference?

    Ask SMU coach Larry Brown.

    “I don’t want to put pressure on [Kentucky coach] John [Calipari],” Brown said Wednesday in Louisville where SMU will face UCLA in the NCAA Tournament on Thursday. “I feel real close to him. I’m so proud of what he’s done. I think they’d honestly make the playoffs in the Eastern Conference if they were in the NBA.”

    Brown, of course, is the only coach to win an NBA title (Detroit) and an NCAA championship (Kansas).

    Kentucky, which plays Hampton in Louisville on Thursday, is 34-0 and seeking the first unbeaten season in college basketball since Bob Knight’s Indiana team did it in 1976.

    Kentucky features numerous future NBA picks, including projected top-2 pick Karl-Anthony Towns of New Jersey.

    The Eastern Conference, meantime, features only six teams with records over 500. The current No. 7 and 8 seeds — Indiana and Miami — are 30-36.

    Asked what it might take to beat Kentucky in the NCAA Tournament, Brown added: “I think in order for somebody to beat Kentucky, Kentucky has to play as poorly as they can possibly play, and somebody else has to play great because they defend so well. They rebound the ball so well, and he’s got them playing as a team. It’s going to be a test for anybody.”

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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