Thursday, February 10, 2011

NCAAB - UNC vs Duke (2-10-11)

Thanks to Disney on Ice and my wife, I missed the first part (and some of the second half) of the UNC/Duke game.  But by the time I was able to tune in, my Dukies were down by 14.  I almost broke my phone because I just knew something was wrong with the ESPN Mobile app, but I digress.  The Heels jumped on the Dukies and it wasn't pretty at all.  I have been worried about the Dukies facing a quality big man and although some people may question me, I've been saying that Zeller (24 pts, 13 rebs, 1 blk) is a quality big man.  Add in Henson (14 pts, 12 rebs, 1 blk) and the Tarheels have a pretty good front line.  It took some kind of calming effect that only Coach K could provide to make the Dukies wake up and play the amazing second half that they had.  Nolan Smith (34 pts, 3 asts, 2 rebs) proved yet again that he is the pot that stirs the kettle (and the ACC POY) and Seth Curry (22 pts, 6 rebs, 5 asts) made all of us think that Stephen changed jerseys for the half.  (Side note, anytime we can cut to a video or picture of Dell's wife, please continue to do so). 

The Tarheel guards were a little off last night and they will have to find some way to score from deep, but I am liking Harrison Barnes (9 pts, 6 rebs, 3 of 8 shooting) now that he has had a chance to learn through the fire that is the ACC.  Kendall Marshall (9 pts, 6 asts, 2 stls) reminds me of a young Deron Williams.  I'm not sure he's as talented, but I'm not sure that many thought Williams was when he was at Illinois.  Marshall is a big body that's more combo guard than pure point, but he'll have the opportunity to do more over the next few years while he's at UNC.  Watch out for him. 

All in all, my Dukies grew up in this game.  They had ample opportunity quit and lose this game at home, but they bounced back and gutted out this win.  They still need more production from Singler (10 pts, 8 rebs, 3 of 17 shooting) because he was almost invisible and the Plumlees (MaP 2 pts, 8 rebs / MiP 4 pts, 9 rebs) HAVE to play better on a consistent basis.  The ACC is no longer just Duke and whomever shows up, you have to be ready for the Tarheel squad going forward too.  The rematch in Chapel Hill ought to be a great one. 

What was your take on the game?

(* Disney on Ice wasn't that bad, you gotta do stuff for the kids)


cjames30082 said...

It seemd to me that every loose ball was going Carolina's way. None of the usual suspects surprised me except the center(can't think of his name; the white guy). Harrison Barnes lost a lot of lift on his jumpers having to chase Kyle Singler. That rendered Barnes ineffective for the scound half of the game.

Seth Curry carried Duke for a spell in the second half. You have to worried a bit if you're a Duke fan because it took a career game from Smith to overcome a good but not Great team. I don't see Duke getting much better but I do see Carolina getting better.

Inquisitive Mind said...

@ cjames30082 - I think that Duke will be a good, not great team for the rest of the way. If Irving is able to come back, they automatically become (IMHO) the team to beat. The BIGS from Duke have got to play better, but the Plumlees have been up and down all year long. Last year I said that if Zoubek got them 10 and 10 (starting during the NCAA tournament) a game that they would win it all. I am not ready to say that at this point. Singler has to play better. Dawkins didn't do anything in this game and he's pretty good.

UNC will get better at the PG spot and they are going to be dangerous. Barnes is starting to 'get it' so I expect him to start proving to people that he was worthy of that pre-season All American selection.