Porter's return gives the Tigers a much-needed ball handler who can play inside and outside. And to say foul trouble crept into the game early doesn't adequately emphasize the overwhelming onslaught of calls that went against the Tigers-the zebras were using their whistles more than the lifeguards at a public pool. Could Missouri win the SEC tournament? The graduate transfer from Canisius finished the regular season ranking fifth in SEC games in points per game (17.5), second in three-point percentage (.444) and second in three-pointers per game (3.3).
Porter wasn't exactly efficient in his return to the floor, knocking down just 29.4 percent of his shots from the field. "Instead of a 40-inch vertical, it's 37".
The Tigers had survived Porter's injury and absence, come together because of it, and were a likely NCAA tournament team because of how they responded.
There's no telling where this Missouri team would have been able to become with a full season of Porter. So we've got some things we've got to fix, but it's small things.
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The Bulldogs missed three free throws in the closing seconds but survived when Missouri guard Kassius Robertson missed a corner 3 with two seconds remaining and time ran out.
Maybe, but now what? For the rest of the first half after the impressive run to open, every ounce of flow in Missouri's offensive game dissipated. Before he went to St. Louis, Cal said "I would not be surprised to see Georgia march through this tournament".
It's all very complicated, and Missouri did the selection committee no favors Thursday.
CAUSE FOR CONCERN: Missouri's offense was downright abysmal for most of this one.Barnett and Robertson - the two leading scorers on this team - combined for 7 points on 4-for-18 shooting.
Considered a lottery pick in this year's NBA Draft if he declares, Porter's presence suddenly makes a good Missouri team (20-11, 10-8 in the SEC) even more of a threat, says Kentucky coach John Calipari.