Congrats to Mason Plumlee, Seth Curry, Ryan Kelly and Todd Zafirovski for allowing us to come along with them on their journey. It’s been so fun to watch.
As for the game, well let’s get to it. This game had me worried a bit and for a lot of the game it was too close for comfort. The emotion was there, maybe the seniors came out a little bit tight but when the time was right the seniors made their presence felt. Duke would ultimately win 85-57 but the game was tighter than that, it was around the first 5 minutes of the second half where Duke would start to assert itself on both ends of the floor. A porous defense kept Virginia Tech within striking distance most of the first half but Duke shored it up in the second holding Virginia Tech to 22 points. Duke still has issues with allowing deep dribble penetration and gave up the lane much too easily to Virginia Tech just as it did Miami. If there is one glaring weakness on this team aside from rebounding it is defending the lane. Vtech was able to get whatever it wanted and a game that could have been a first round knock out lasted into the middle rounds. Duke is making games much harder than they have to be in a lot of cases, and as a fan it worries me.
Duke would rely on its seniors in this game. Seth Curry would lead all Duke scorers with 20, hitting 5 3 pointers in the process. The interesting thing about Curry’s game is that he seemed much more engaged on defense. Perhaps it was wanting to make a statement in his [...]
I believe my heart just started beating again. Duke just gets by Miami, 79-76, and there is a lot to talk about. The obvious is Ryan Kelly, who may have come back a better player than when he went out. Kelly started, played 32 minutes, and was brilliant. Kelly was 10 out of 14 for the game and 7 of 9 from 3-point range on his way to a career high 36 points, after not having played for weeks. Kelly scored 20 points in the first half and no other Duke player had more than 4. Kelly smoothly knocked down jumper after jumper, letting the game come to him, never forcing the action, never really needing to. I’m happy to say I was wrong about an adjustment time being necessary; the White Raven has taken flight. I don’t think anyone, including the Duke coaches, knew Kelly would be the best player on the floor tonight, much less have that much of an impact on this game. He played like the senior leader he is and Duke’s chances of moving deep into the postseason have definitely increased.
Despite Kelly having an out-of-body experience in the first half, Duke trailed by 2. Duke allowed Miami 20 points in the paint and 9 second-chance points to Duke’s 0. Miami was aggressive and lived in the paint against Duke, only the shooting of Kelly prevented a much larger halftime deficit.
There were problems that were evident throughout the game, though they may have been overshadowed by Kelly’s impressive performance. Duke’s defense in the first half was horrendous: Miami got whatever it wanted in the lane and Duke was routinely beaten off the dribble. Duke will need to improve going [...]
Welp, here we are after a 68 – 73 loss last night to UVA. A loss that leaves me curious as to whether we even prepared at all. I don’t know how you go through the season that this team has gone through and have to make a statement like, “It was a very, very physical game and we’re not equipped to that type of game. We got knocked back,” Coach K said.
So Minnesota, Louisville, Kentucky, UNC not physical? I’m left shaking my head a bit at that.
I guess I’m just a bit bitter, I’m allowed to be I suppose, which is why this post is going to be less fact oriented and more editorial.
As much as I love this team its weaknesses are there for all to see and going into tournament season it leaves me a bit worried. I never thought toughness or being able to match the intensity of an opponent would EVER be an issue for a team in Duke blue. Too many tough competitors have come through those halls for this team not to live up to that standard. With 3 games left in this regular season the mission statement is clear, do the little things. Rebounding and boxing out are all about effort plays, plays that go to the aggressor and the most passionate, it’s a tell-tale sign and Duke losing that stat handily is a red flag and an obvious indicator of a lack of that passion, that effort. Everyone wants to shoot but no one wants to grab that board, or put a body on someone. Makes me wish Duke had a toughness coach. Someone has to place a premium on these things because UVA is [...]
It was an impressive and for the most part dominating performance by the Devils against a talented and surging Boston College team. Duke needed an early timeout and tongue lashing but after a fiery Coach K oration the Devils stormed back onto the court and man-handled the Eagles. Duke was strong in every phase of the game and by halftime had a lead of 51 to 27. Duke got scoring from all over the place but leading the charge was freshman Rasheed Sulaimon who continues to impress on his way to a possible ACC Rookie of the year honor. Sulaimon scored a game high 27 points and was on the attack the entire game, scoring baskets from outside, mid-range and getting to cup. Rasheed also had 3 assists and went 3-5 from distance. He remains the Dukie who can most easily get his own shot, and as good as Rasheed is this year, with a stronger base and body next yearâ€¦watch out ACC. With all the recruiting hype he’s Dukes under the radar superstar.
Mason Plumlee had himself a mans game again against a team that nearly had his and Dukes number in Chestnut Hill. Instead of Eddie Odio powering down dunks on Duke, Plumlee turned the tables and was the most active and engaged as I’ve seen him all season. Mason played like a nimble athlete, this game, as opposed to a guy with lead in his shoes. He was quick off his feet and his timing and decision-making was much improved, Plumlee also lead the team in assists with 4. Mason pulled down half of Dukes entire rebounding total with 15, and scored 19 points for the game 11 of those were from [...]
If you guys don’t know or haven’t read the story of Duke grad Gloria Borges, you need to do yourselves a favor and do so. I’m not sure there is a word in the English language strong enough to adequately portray the passion and drive she has for finding a cure for colon cancer. Please take the time to view the video I’ve embedded below, in addition visit the Wunder Project’s websiteÂ and forward or tell a friend because everyone knows someone who knows someone that cancer impacts.