Sunday, February 24, 2013

Can ‘magical’ McLemore trump Hilton Magic?

Kansas fans reach to slap hands with Ben McLemore as he exits the floor after a 33-point performance and a game-tying three that send the game into overtime on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas fans reach to slap hands with Ben McLemore as he exits the floor after a 33-point performance and a game-tying three that send the game into overtime on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.



Kansas fans reach to slap hands with Ben McLemore as he exits the floor after a 33-point performance and a game-tying three that send the game into overtime on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at Allen Fieldhouse.

— No Kansas University basketball player, coach or fan ever tires of watching the replay of Ben McLemore’s straight-on, last-second 22-foot shot that banked off the backboard that forced overtime against upset-minded Iowa State on Jan. 9 in Allen Fieldhouse.

“Magical,” KU senior Kevin Young said of the three that sparked KU to an 97-89 overtime victory over the Cyclones in the Big 12 opener for both teams.

McLemore, who scored a career-high 33 points, today seeks an encore in ISU’s Hilton Coliseum, where the Cyclones — 15-0 this season — have been known to perform “Hilton Magic” time and again.

Tipoff for the rematch between the Jayhawks (23-4, 11-3) and Cyclones (19-8, 9-5) is 8 p.m., with a live broadcast on ESPN.

Does McLemore expect the Hilton denizens to try to rattle him?

“I’m sure they will,” McLemore said, smiling. “I’ll listen to my teammates like I always do, and we’ll try to play the best we can.”

ISU’s fans chanted “We Want Kansas” during the final two minutes of an 86-66 home victory over Texas Tech on Saturday.

“I remember it,” ISU coach Fred Hoiberg said to the Associated Press of McLemore’s shot. “I don’t think I’ll ever flush the memory.”

Hoiberg’s Cyclones “are good and they score easier than anyone in our league,” KU coach Bill Self said. ISU hit 14 threes in that OT meeting in Allen. “We have to do a great job individually, defensively, and our ball-screening has to be great. We were fortunate to get a win the first time. I think we have a great opportunity going there to beat a dangerous team. We are going to have to play our best game away from home.”

KU is 7-2 in Hilton Coliseum in the Self era.

“We haven’t really played that well on the road since the Ohio State game,” Self said. “We just hung in there and figured out a way to win like we did on Wednesday night against Oklahoma State. We are going to have to go play a good game in Ames because they have guys that can score. We are going to have to make shots and be efficient. This needs to be a special game that we play on Monday night.”

ISU is led by double-digit scorers Will Clyburn (14.9 ppg), Tyrus McGee (13.1 ppg), Georges Niang (11.4) and Melvin Ejim (11.1).

“They have crazy fans that are very close to the court. It’s a great environment, kind of like the fieldhouse but not as good,” KU’s Jeff Withey said. “It’s going to be crazy up there.

“Historically, we haven’t done all that well in Ames, but this is for a conference championship, and if we win our next couple of road games we should be fine. I think we’re gonna be all right; we’re going to come ready to play.”

So will the Cyclones.

“It’s one of the biggest games of the year to keep us in the hunt for the NCAA Tournament,” ISU’s Chris Babb said.

“We played them well at their place,” Clyburn added. “We can do better here.”


KUFan90 6 years, 7 months ago

"We Want Kansas" eh ISU fans?

Like my mom always used to careful what you wish for!

Hope Bill reminds the team about this. Its going to be a tough game.

Michael Luby 6 years, 7 months ago

I hope your avatar shows up in KU's locker room to put some steam into their shorts for the game!

RJ King 6 years, 7 months ago

After catching much of the Oscars, what'll you give me for a B-Mac/Jamie Foxx look alike? Hope to see an Oscar Robertson impression at the Hilton. McLemore Unchained?

McLemore Unchained!

McLemore Unchained! by RJ King

Kent Richardson 6 years, 7 months ago

"Samson" with a fro slays 200 Cyclostines with the hambone of a swine. Herclamore captures the "Golden Pigskin" and kicks 10 field goals (with each one doinking in off the upright). Hoiberg gets "flushed" and goes to Monday School to pray.

yates33333 6 years, 7 months ago

I think we will find out tonight whether McLemore is really ready for the pros. Of course, all the sportscasters that cover KU games are sure he is, as are most newspaper and sports' magazine writers. Hoiberg, who in some respects the consummate NBA student-player now coaching collegiates, will no doubt have a special defense ready for him. A defense that will be much like McLemore can expect once he is a pro with a reputation as a scorer. While McLemore has a fast shot and is an excellent spot-up shooter when compared to several other Big 12 players he has some trouble creating his shot. He also has a bit of trouble driving the ball at times which primarily results from teammates who back up players that McLemore beat. Also, although at much different skill levels I believe college teams clog the box areas against drivers better than the pros. As a redshirt freshman it's not unusual that McLemore fumbles the ball occasionally. We should all be as good as he is at his worst. BTW, I hope he doesn't go pro this year.

I wish announcers, or some of the posters who really understand BB, would comment on Kevin Young's possibilities as a pro. He reminds me a bit of Denis Rodman. I wish I knew their physical dimensions. Is/was Rodman taller and heavier than Young? They both play/played with great enthusiasm and have/had the ability to be in the right place for rebounds. They both are/were moderate scorers and were excellent teammates despite Rodman's showmanship.

Although I believe Withey will be drafted in the first round, he still gets moved around by opponents. The referees let Abron push, pull, tug, etc., him unmercifully Saturday. Will he be able to put on weight and hold his ground as a pro? Having never been, nor expecting to be, 7 foot it must the hard to develop balance at that size. Of course, Wilt and many others have done it. I sure hope Withey can because I think he can be a first class pro with his ability to run the court and his enthusiasm for the game.

Big, Big night tonight!! Go Hawks. Rock Chalk.

Jonathan Allison 6 years, 7 months ago

Rodman was a late-bloomer for sure. He wasn't very athletic in high school and didn't hit his growth spurt until it was too late to play high school ball. He eventually would play college ball for SE Ok State of the NAIA and he dominated. But dominating the NAIA barely got him on the NBA radar. He ended up a second round pick. Early in his career he wasn't much bigger than Young, at 6'7" but he weighed more, listed at 210 as a rookie. In those days it's likely that he was using some sort of steroids or growth supplement that would eventually become illegal.

He definitely had a knack for rebounding, tough defense, and garbage points like no other player. Though on the defensive end, especially later in his career he really did the most damage by mentally taking his opponent out of the game and making it a personal grudge match. I remember him guarding Shaq when he was on the Bulls and he would inevitably get Shaq so angry that Shaq would just force up bad shots and effectively take himself out of the game.

Joseph Bullock 6 years, 7 months ago

I love B Mac, but in my opinion, he is far from ready for the Pros. he still makes a lot of defensive mistakes, he makes quite a few careless turnovers, and seems to sometimes back down from physical play. and if the pressure is really on, sometimes he defers too much, instead of taking charge, like a true Pro prospect would do. That being said, there is a lot of season left, for him to improve on those things. But as it stands right now, he needs another year of College ball. But let's see what he can do in a hostile environment, tonight, because he did not do well at all, in Stillwater!

Kyle Sybesma 6 years, 7 months ago

The NBA only drafts on potential and they don't play defense.... He's ready and he's gone and he should go. Cash out while your stock is high.

Robert Brock 6 years, 7 months ago

The game in Stillwater showed whether he is ready for the pros. Uh, no.

But he will go pro anyway and he will be selected in the first 10 picks. He will get a big paycheck but I predict that he will not play much his rookie year. Meh.

Theonlythingthatexceedsyourbad 6 years, 7 months ago

He's ready. He'll probably start his first year in the NBA

jaybate 6 years, 7 months ago

I see Kevin much as you do. But I am not sure there is a Chuck Daly, or a Phil Jackson, in the NBA now.

I think plasticJayhawk's summary of Rodman is pretty accurate, as far as it goes. Rodman was kind of like Bill Bridges as far as rebounding went. He was a savant. And had good knees.

But I have always thought that Rodman flourished as he did, because of some pretty specific team circumstances. The Pistons were one of the meanest, most dangerous bunch of cheap shotters around. Basically every guy on the team was willing to put guys in the hospital and this cleared a way for Rodman to get away with a lot of athleticism and shoving that opposing big men would otherwise have lowered the boom on. Basically, most opposing bigs were afraid to lower the boom on Rodman in Detroit, because they knew Bill Laimbeer, Rick Mahorn and John Salley would lay them out if they did. As a result, Rodman's great springs, savant anticipation, and physical defense went essentially unpunished, despite him being a relatively short and slight rebounder. Without Laimbeer, Mahorn and Salley, I doubt Rodman could ever have been as effective as he was.

And when Rodman went to the Bulls, he fell under the protective halo of Michael Jordan. No referees were ever going to allow Rodman to be layed out and so jeopardize Jordan's push for the last two rings he won with Rodman. And without that protective halo, Rodman late in his career would never have been able to bully and intimidate great players around the league as he did.

Not only Rodman, but Scottie Pippen, found out how tough the L really was after Jordan retired. Neither guy could ever consistently get away with what they had, while playing Jordan, afterwards. Rodman became little more than a rodeo clown on a basketball court after Jordan retired.

Bill Bridges was a vastly greater athlete and rebounder than Dennis Rodman ever was.

Bridges was only 6-5 and he played on two bad knees through out his NBA career. Bridges played within the rules and without the protective thugs of the bad boys and the protective halo of a guy like Michael Jordan.

Bill Bridges was all man.

Bill Bridges would have put a hurt on Dennis Rodman like he could not have imagined.

And if Mahorn, or Laimbeer, or Salley had come after Bridges, he would have hurt them baaaaaad!!!!

jaybate 6 years, 7 months ago

Let's put it this way. Had Bill Bridges been playing when Rodman played, Chuck Daly would have traded Rodman and Salley to get Bridges. And Phil Jackson would never have had to put up with Rodman's antics to get those last couple rings for Jordan.

And this is coming from someone that actually likes Rodman and thinks he was very good.

Now as to Kevin Young, he is a tireless force and has the rebounding knack, and plays for a coach that likes to spread the rebounding work around, but I don't think he's got the foot speed and sliding skills that Rodman had, and he is definitely not as productive a rebounder as Bridges.

Kevin also makes goof ball mistakes that neither Bridges, nor Rodman, ever made.

I see him getting a look in the D-League, and if he can guard his position, then he might get lucky and joins someone's posse squeeze in that way. He has the same problem Russell Robinson has. He just doesn't shoot well enough to break through.

Bridges and Rodman were true rebounding freaks capable of grabbing 15 rebounds in a game frequently.

I know Kevin could grab 15 once in a great while, when he played 38 minutes.

But I just don't find him quite as good of a rebounder, and his feet are just a little slow sliding to keep up with top players.

Odds are then that his future is over seas.

And I like Kevin a whole lot.

RJ King 6 years, 7 months ago

Perhaps Kevin can get his hands on Rodman's wedding gown for the sequel to the Jayhawk Harlem Shuffle.

Kent Richardson 6 years, 7 months ago

Mr. Bedore, are you the only one who was manning the presses last night?

monkeehawkSL8 6 years, 7 months ago

Biggest game of the year and I feel like I've read a story off a match book.

Ken Sedgwick 6 years, 7 months ago

Forty minutes of focus. Give them Kansas!

Hoosierhawkfan 6 years, 7 months ago

They want us? They've got us. Lay the wood to 'em guys!!!

FearlessJayhawk 6 years, 7 months ago

The point guard position is the main reason KU isn't going to go very far in March. Johnson and Tharpe are just too inconsistent. You never know who is going to show up.

nuleafjhawk 6 years, 7 months ago

It sounds like what he's saying is point-less.....

monkeehawkSL8 6 years, 7 months ago

I don't usually make blanket statements. Things happen outside the box so often. I also try to avoid negative confessions, like "the point guard position is the main reason KU isn't going to go to far in March".

I hope the Hawks play to their ceiling tonight and in every game until the end of the season SOMETIME IN APRIL. The team this year has struggled in other areas. The JAYHAWKS need to avoid the turnover flu, Travis needs to be aggressive on both ends, Jeff needs to avoid playing bang ball, put up about 12 of those jump hooks. Kevin needs to just be Kevin and make the bunnies. Ben, by now will have played in enough pressure situations that he will thrive off the hostile crowd. EJ and Nadir will make plays, drive and dish. Choose their LIMITED shots well.

The bench needs to play solid helpful minutes, The entire team needs to quiet the crowd early, late and often. DEFENSE, REBOUND, only pass to your own team mates.

And FearlessJayhawk may want to consider changing your name to, GlassBroken LiquidAllOverTheFloorI'veCutMyFeetKindaThinkingPerson.

Chris Shaw 6 years, 7 months ago

B-Mac is an interesting debate for sure. You can see the "Potential" right before your very eyes. It's hard to turn down the possibility of being a Top 5 pick. I don't think he goes number 1, but his stock has hurt him a little the last few weeks.

You can tell he is trying to be more aggressive, but the problem with being more aggressive is that when your ball handling is suspect, it's hard to get to that extra gear during the season. He'll get better in the offseason regardless, but does that help the hawks right now if he can't find that extra gear? We'll see.

Theonlythingthatexceedsyourbad 6 years, 7 months ago

Disagree. He scores with so much ease. Plus, he looked like MJ on that dunk. I think he's number 1 and starts in the NBA. Honestly, he shouldn't come back, if he does then that is great but turning down millions to go to college doesn't really make sense.

Chris Shaw 6 years, 7 months ago

He scores with ease in his jump shot and transition. He doesn't score very easily in a half-court set unless other guards are creating for him. His "Playmaking" and ball handling off the dribble is his biggest weakness. IMO he doesn't go #1.

dylans 6 years, 7 months ago

It would be fantastic if Ben wanted to develop his game at the collegiate level for the potential larger second contract. However, the ever looming possibility of an injury, or millions of dollars being dangled in front of his face will probably prove to be too much of an obstacle for him to return. Most people never have to make such a decision: Guaranteed millions today or maybe more or less down the road; Most peoples options: Get a job or go hungry. The second is an easier choice (esp. if not on food stamps).

justinryman 6 years, 7 months ago

"Hilton Magic" and now the UNL is moving into a new arena they have been talking about the past and "Devaney Magic" Yeah it's funny how these teams need magic to win games, and they are most notably against KU. KU doesn't use magic to win games, there is no "Allen Field House Magic". KU just wins games. Sure there is a the Phog, but it's not magical, it's legendary.

Magic doesn't exist, it's slight of hand, or a game or a trick. I don't believe in magic.

Ron Franklin 6 years, 7 months ago

Illusion is just one small aspect of magic. Magic exists in many other forms. The Phog is definitely magical, just as the creation of the universe was magical. I guess we can agree to disagree :)

Tony Bandle 6 years, 7 months ago

Wait a second there, don't consider The Phog magic??!! Heresy!!

Thers's sleight of hand, misdirection, optical illusions, smoke and mirrors but true magic is rare. It's a positive energy /synergy that's invisible yet palatible and The Phog in Allen is a perfect example.

You must be an accountant or an engineer!! :)

ParisHawk 6 years, 7 months ago

The engineers thank you for that last line...

(and maybe the accountants, but that's not my problem.)

justinryman 6 years, 7 months ago

I said the Phog was "legendary" as in "the legend of Zeus" I was not trying to take anything away from what the Phog is. Mystical? Would that be a better way to put it?

I think if a team needs magic to win, it better be the Lakers. KU is good enough and has been good enough in the History of the school that it doesn't need magic to win a game.

And as for the accountant of engineer, no and no. I'm just a guy who has had a few too many jobs that works his butt off at everyone of them. But that's not why we are here.

nuleafjhawk 6 years, 7 months ago

I like magic. It usually involves scantily clad women.

clevelandjayhawker 6 years, 7 months ago

Looking back at how we played for a 10 day period compared to how we are playing now I really do wonder if we as a team had the flu. I dont think coach Self would admit it and wouldnt want to use it as an excuse, but we lost to I dont want to use it as an excuse but it seems like it could have been the cause of why some of our more consistent players were so sub par, it seems like Withey is fully recovered and it is really showing.

With that said: turnovers, speed of play and making free throws/bunnies....Rock Chalk

LLH 6 years, 7 months ago

In regards to Ben's pro status, Yes, I'm sure he will likely decide to go pro, and yes, I'm sure he will likely be a top 5, top 10 pick at worst. Now comes the unpopular part. Is he ready? That's the question everybody asks. Define ready? Does he have NBA athleticism? Yes, undoubtedly. Does he have and NBA jump shot? Yes, undoubtedly. Are any other of his current skills NBA level? Only time will tell on that one. My problem with the NBA is that, once you are there, you really aren't awarded much time to develop any further. These owners are paying these kids tons of money and aren't interested in paying them that much money more than 3 years unless of course they produce fantastic results. It's a business, they don't care if the kid washes out in three years, somebody else's problem then. What most "fans" don't realize is that NBA money is realized once you get the SECOND contract, and are then a "vet". Lottery money and signing bonuses are not what they use to be, and by the time the player pays their agent, handlers, etc, they usually wind up with far less money than the fans think they will. Look, make no mistake, Ben is top 5 material, and when you have a winning lotto ticket, you don't give that up. I'm just saying, there are lessons to be learned by thinking that EVERY top 5 pick is going to be an NBA All-Star, get a second, more profitable contract, and have longevity in the league. I wish Ben well, and thank him for his hard work and dedication as a Jayhawk.

RockChalk26 6 years, 7 months ago

"Ben, you are hurting your draft stock by playing well this season. Don't you know that the draft is based on player potential?"

-Kwame Brown

Sally Presson 6 years, 7 months ago

Love Kevin Young, he's such a go-getter!!! Wish we had him next year and of course Ben, another year would really finish him up for the pros, but we'll see. He's a great one and so much fun to watch.

Ames is extremely difficult to play at their house, but we can do it!!! Go Hawks, be ready for a battle and come out victorious!!!

Rock chalk!!!

Beau Woolsey 6 years, 7 months ago

What people seem to forget is that the nba is lacking in talent at the 2 guard and there hasn't been one this talented since Wade BMac will shine on the next level because he is an amazing talent who can dominate on the next level If its the wizards or cavs who get the first pick they won't pick him because they picked Beal and waiters (respectively) but any other team like the bobcats or magic you can bet they will pick up McLemore

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