It was only nine days ago that UCLA manhandled Arizona 75-59 in Los Angeles. On Thursday, the Pac-12 powers are set for a rematch with the Wildcats holding home-court advantage and looking to exact some revenge. The 8 p.m. ET showdown between the No. 3 Bruins and No. 7 Arizona carries national significance and major Pac-12 implications and offers a chance at redemption for the Wildcats, who played their worst offensive game of the season in the first meeting.
Arizona (17-2, 7-1 Pac-12) shot a season-low 30.7% from the floor the first time around, while UCLA shot 50% and turned the basketball over only eight times. Because of the Bruins' 16-point win and subsequent blowout victories against Cal and Stanford, they swapped spots with the Wildcats in this week's AP Top 25.
The Wildcats, meanwhile, had to rally in order to beat lowly Arizona State at home on Saturday as their offense continued with uncharacteristic struggles. Part of the issue for Arizona is the limited mobility of second-leading scorer Azuolas Tubelis, who is on the mend from an ankle injury. The 6-foot-11 sophomore played just 15 minutes in the first game against UCLA and logged only 21 against the Sun Devils.
But UCLA has a key personnel question as well since leading scorer Johnny Juzang has missed the last two games due to COVID-19 protocols. Juzang is expected to play against Arizona, but it'll be interesting to see how effective he is in what will be his first game action since the first meeting between these teams.
How to watch UCLA vs. Arizona live
Date: Thursday, Feb. 3 | Time: 8 p.m. ET
Location: McKale Center-- Tucson, Arizona
TV: ESPN | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
UCLA vs. Arizona prediction, picks
UCLA is playing some of its best basketball of the season and Arizona is playing some of its worst. The Wildcats have home-court advantage this time, however, and that should make a significant difference. Look for Kerr Kriisa to snap out of his slump after the key Arizona guard went 0 for 12 in the first meeting. If he hits a few key shots, Arizona should be able to squeak out a close victory. Prediction: Arizona 74, UCLA 72
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