We noted an interesting triangle of games when we first invited the Value Add Basketball Game and were playing just teams from the www.kenpom.com era this century. The UConn 2004 with their dominant size lost by double digits 61-74 vs. the speedy Louisville 2013 team (now 18th in our all-time rankings). However, that UConn team then dominated the Villanova 2018 team (now 5th in our all-time rankings) 73-56. However, Nova then beat Louisville 77-73 to complete the triangle with all three teams going 1-1 against each other.
Saturday the UConn 1999 team from five years earlier likewise could not handle pressure. Another of the all-time great pressure teams, the 1994 Arkansas "40 minutes of hell" defense, forced 22 UConn turnovers in a lopsided 82-61 win.
Both superstars had great games, as Arkansas' Corliss Williamson went off for 31 points and 3 blocked shots, and UConn's Richard Hamilton scored 20. Arkansas surges to 15th on our all-time rankings and game log spreadsheet to solidify our Top 25 now that the top 37 teams have all had a chance by playing at least three games against other great teams. The highest ranked team is Cazzie Russell's 1965 Michigan team with a 1-1 mark and ranking 38th out of our 135 all-time great teams in the game.
Another fun note was a 7 year old wanted to roll the dice while I played, with me just telling him the results of the roll. He picked up on things. At one point he said, "are the really low numbers on the 20-sided dice like 1 and 2 when they make 3-point shots?" to which I answered, "unless the defender steals the ball or blocks the shot." Then he asked on another possession "why didn't Arkansas get to try to get a rebound when they missed?" and I showed him that there is only a chance for an offensive rebound on the gray shaded possessions but on the plain white possessions the defense always gets them.
While the UConn 1999 team takes a hit with the loss, the UConn 2004 team rounds out the top 10 - 1, UCLA 1972; 2, Duke 2001; 3, Kansas 2008; 4, Kentucky 1996; 5, Villanova 2018; 6, Kansas 1997; 7, UNC 2005; 8, Indiana 1978; 9, Ohio State 1960; 10, UConn 2004.
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