Last night, the Duke Blue Devils turned around a halftime deficit, pretty much doubled up the Pittsburgh Panthers in the second half, looked great defensively. The offense still a work in progress.
Connor O'Neill from Devils Illustrated, or Deacons Illustrated, both. He was there. That had to be fun. Duke electrifying the crowd, showing some defense. I thought it was all about defense.
From your vantage point, what'd you got? I thought it was all about defense. You could feel it was, Cameron's going to be a factor in every home game, but it was one of those games where it kind of pushed it to the next level. And Cameron really was a factor in the game. You felt the energy kind of build there in the second half. And it just, just kept building until what was an 11 point halftime deficit, I think was an 11 point lead there in the, in the second half.
So yeah, you're, you're absolutely right. It starts with defense. And really, it starts with the defense of Derrick. Lively the second, like that's the one that turned it around and who would have thought that's the area where he's been better. Like offensively, he hasn't been great defensively.
He's been a little bit better this year, but he got out on the perimeter and guarded some pit guards that have cooked guys. Yeah, see that to me, that was the eye opening part of where that game really turned. Duke was already in the process of cutting into the lead. He had already made that like a seven point game. It was the slowest 15-0 run I think I've ever, I've ever seen from a Duke team that we normally associate with being offensively explosive. It was a slow bleed with that, with that lead because Duke's offense really never got on track. It did ultimately score in transition and at the free throw line and on second chance opportunities. I mean, it was the first to, you know, where you had to switch onto guards and he was good. I thought was the difference in them really maybe completing that comeback.
And then he did, did a couple of things offensively. Do you see more for him on the offensive end or is it always going to be, you know, just go get some offensive rebounds? Don't think he's gonna be what they thought. He was gonna be with as far as being on the perimeter Being a three-point writer like you see highlights of him in AAU ball, and he's hitting threes and taking dribble drives from the wing I don't think that's gonna be happening in the next two months the the drop step into a hook shot that tied the game at 52 52 if He gives you one or two of those a game with confidence You take it like I've talked to to Aaron Beard and Steve Wiseman about this a couple times this year It's not an explosive Duke team.
They don't have the shooting that is gonna lead to your quick lightning strike 8-0 10-0 12-0 runs. It's gonna have to happen on the defensive end and in transition Where this Duke team has the capability of being better is on the defensive end. It's it's on you know it's Having two seven-footers that can both step out there and guard a 6-3 Perimeter guy and stay in front of them and then make it really difficult for them if to get a shot off in the lane If they get past them It's having guys like Tyrese Proctor be your point guard and he's 6-5 and long It's Mark Mitchell and Durek Whitehead giving you size and length on the on the perimeter creating some steals Stripping and ripping as as a as I mix up the beats here as Steve Forbes likes to say getting in the gaps and stripping and ripping and When you do that you create transition buckets and getting out in transition I mean, that's something that every young team loves to do and that's no exception with this team Yeah, look without Jeremy Roach. You knew the half-court offense was gonna be a little bit of a work in progress, but It was probably the best game in a while for Proctor as well I thought when they got out in transition, it was a little easier for him.
Not easy, but easier He still still struggles to turn and beat his guy off the dribble Where you know from the perimeter and his shot hasn't shown up yet. It's still I guess down under But I mean, I thought he played a pretty good game last night and maybe that's also encouraging. I thought that was his best game so far It's easy to say based on the stats, you know, 14 points 5 assists and no turnovers Especially considering that it's his second game operating as the as the point guard like he's got to be the point guard without Jeremy Roach in the lineup and You're talking about a guy that goes out and has no turnovers against the pit defense that has experienced guards like those are those are grown men that he's playing against and For him to handle the pressure last night.
I thought that was you know It's crazy. You you wind up you talk about Derek Lively's impact on defense You talk about Tyrese Proctor's game offensively and how he's handled the the new role And then we saw him and talked about Kyle Filipowski having 28 and 15 It's it's kind of crazy that that that feels like a tertiary factor in this game But it really was like it was it was lively. It was Proctor. It was Whitehead doing a couple things in transition It was Jacob Grandison with a big corner three there when Pitt looked like they were gonna push back into the game So it was you know, it's the old cliche It was a team win, but it really was a team win like it John Shire said it it felt like in that second half everybody on the team found some way some kind of role to fill some kind of void to fill and And that's how you make up a an 11-point halftime deficit. Yeah, it feels like Jacob Grandison is sort of He's not falling out of the rotation because John I think is that a good job of playing all of the guys available to him But it does seem like and I have to go back and look at it that the minutes have not been you know all that abundant for Grandison, but I like I was wondering going into the game could Grandison be part of the mix in Running the offense because he seems like he has he's got that hybrid game And I don't know really it pretty much was Proctor pretty much all night who had the ball in his hand and creating But I think Grandison can really help. He's also a veteran guy Yeah, he's a veteran I just think he he didn't do that that much at Illinois like he was a lot more Conditioned to be a small right for spot Because and you know I was talking to somebody about this the other day It was easy to be a four at Illinois when you're five is pokey Cockburn. He's gonna grab everything And he's gonna make up for every deficiency interior defense.
I think Jacob is is what he is like he is a He is a good consistent three-point threat. Yeah, he's gonna make the right plays One of the things John is looking for is just who's gonna play hard defensively And that's why he loves going to Grandison and Blake's off the bench in certain spots You can see it when he feels like the defense is slipping. Those are the first two guys that he goes to Connor O'Neill from Deacons and Devils Illustrated, I guess this is Devils Illustrated his Twitter at Connor O'Neill underscore di solves serves both purposes When first of all do we know we know Jeremy Roach is not playing at Clemson, but do we know? Does John have an idea of how much longer that it's going to take or because it's a toe We just have no clue I Had somebody put on my message board when when the injury first happened like oh, no not the toe anything, but the toe, right? There's there's still some Kyrie Irving scar tissue there with Duke fans. I Think he's playing against Miami. I think John has a good handle on it It's it's gonna bother him all season It's not a situation where he's gonna magically wake up one day and it's not gonna bother him It's gonna be painful for him the rest right now is to get the pain under his threshold so that he can play through it and Feel like he's at least close to a hundred percent. He's never gonna be right until You're probably gonna see something Within a week or two of Duke's last game whenever that happens that says Jeremy Roach has undergone a procedure for a toe injury So I heard all the way back in at the end of November That's no good. I You know, look, I don't know but I don't know if this team can win a national championship I think they can make a deep run which to me is win twice in an NCAA tournament, but I Don't know if they can win a title, but I know they can't do any of it without Jeremy Roach I think ultimately when they play the best teams the Offense without Roach is just gonna be a very difficult one to negotiate Real quick and I know you were at Cameron last night But just overall thoughts on what you have seen from the demon deacons who their core last night Was just incredibly efficient 20 what 23 of 32 from the floor 8 of 10 from three-point range We know that Steve Forbes can coach so that mean that is just a given But he seems like he's got at least enough to be a factor every night so you're talking about three 20-point games last night and Not one of them was turned in by the guy that Is probably a first team all ACC player at this point in Tyree Apple Yeah, right. He's he's all the way down there with 16 points and eight assists.
Yeah, eight assists were good though Yeah, yeah three steals to go along with it. I mean Steve can coach and Steve can evaluate the transfer portal Steve knows exactly what he wants to get out of the transfer portal when he Goes into it the thing that that I think we need to talk more about is How he puts together a roster and builds chemistry in a short amount of time Like this is another team with so many newcomers that come in and they immediately know how to play off each other. They know who?
Who likes the ball where what shooting pockets to hit whose spots are in which places and? Man, you're right. They're gonna be a factor like they're they're gonna play really good offense it's gonna be a matter of can they play defense for long enough and well enough to Score some more quad one wins. That's where you get to talking about you want to compare to last year They're already ahead of the game last year they have the win it was constant in in the belt and in the bank and a home win against Duke and so You know, it's it's really to me. It's a team that turned their season around with with two games They went to Rutgers and got annihilated and they turned around three days later and beat Duke at home. I Again, he's he's a great coach.
I think he is walking chemistry also I think Forbes personality is just it lends itself to good chemistry because how would you not like to be around the guy? Right. I mean he just seems like such a genuinely fun Human being as you are Connor O'Neill at Connor O'Neill underscore di Devil's Illustrated Deacon's Illustrated if there was another D involved. I'm sure we can illustrate that as well Connor be well, I appreciate your time. Happy New Year. We'll talk to you soon. Thanks Adam. I appreciate it
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-12 16:05:56 / 2023-01-12 16:11:44 / 6