"When you have open shots, you are supposed to make them," Stockton said.
* With Kentucky leading 78-76, Stockton chased down a rebound after Patrick Sparks missed a 3-pointer. A few seconds later Rajon Rondo scored UK's last points with 2:13 left.
"It was just hustle that got me the ball. Pat was back on defense, so everybody else is supposed to go to the boards," Stockton said. "Nobody tried to block me out. I had a free trip to the ball."
* After Joe Crawford missed a 3-pointer with UK leading 80-78, the Volunteers had a chance to tie the game or take the lead when JaJuan Smith lost the ball. Stockton dove on the floor for the steal and deflected the ball to Crawford with 8.1 seconds left.
"He was just dribbling and I got a piece of the ball," Stockton said. "My first instinct was just to dive on the floor and knock the ball out when he tried to get it. Joe was there to pick it up."
* Crawford failed to put the game away when he missed the front end of the bonus at the foul line. That gave Tennessee a chance to win the game when C.J. Watson took a 3-point shot just before the final buzzer. But guess who was there to at least make Watson stop and shoot over him? That's right. It was UK's new mighty mite, Stockton.
Win over ranked team
"My main concern was not to give him a great look," Stockton said. "I also didn't want to foul him. When he pulled up, I just contested it the best I could and prayed it wouldn't go in."
It didn't and Stockton and his teammates got a win over a ranked team for the first time since they beat Louisville in mid-December.
Stockton finished with six points, three assists, three rebounds, two turnovers and one steal in a career-high 22 minutes.
"Everybody here can play. I always knew that. But it's not like I was the star or anything like that. I just did my job," Stockton said.
He's right. Rondo, who scored 16 points, did the fancy work when he shredded Tennessee's defense for six easy field goals inside the lane in the second half. Or when the Vols did collapse inside, he passed to open teammates - he had eight assists - who made shot after shot.
Morris, Rondo played like the best
Then there was Randolph Morris, who played like a player who should have been picked in last summer's NBA draft. Morris had a season-high 22 points and nine rebounds. Like Rondo, he was 8-for-9 from the field and his 14 points in the first half kept the Wildcats in the game after they fell behind 21-7.
Rondo and Morris are supposed to be UK's two best players and they finally played that way in the same game. They were a combined 9-for-9 from the field the second half when UK made 15 of 19 shots, an unbelievable 78.9 percent mark.
However, without Stockton there to make the little plays that he did, Kentucky may not have won. Stockton's effort and overall play the last five games have helped show more talented teammates that doing things the way Smith wants makes Kentucky a far better team than when each player does what he thinks will work best.
"This game was fun," Stockton said.
He hopes more fun is still to come. UK and Florida will both take 9-6 league marks into Sunday's game that will decide who finishes second and gets a first-round bye in the SEC Tournament. But if the Cats could win, it could do even more than clinch the bye. It could be just the boost this team needs going to postseason play.
"I know a lot of people have given up on us," Stockton said. "But we still believe we can have a successful run in March. We still think we can surprise some people."
After what Stockton did here Wednesday, who knows.
"Am I surprised at how I played? No. I'm just glad I got the chance because no matter what anyone else thought, I knew I could help this team win," Stockton said.