Sunday, November 29, 2009

Guest Contributor Ray Floriani: Breaking Down Duke vs UConn

by Ray Floriani

NEW YORK CITY - This one needs special mention. It was a game not really as close as the final score indicates. Yet it was one that UConn had to a three possession affair in the waning minutes. In a hard fought game where "made shots were not easy to come by," per coach Mike Krzyzewski, his Duke Blue Devils defeated UCONN 68-59 to capture the Pre-Season NIT. The four factors...


Among the four factors the figure that jumps off the page is offensive rebounding percentage. Duke owned the offensive bards, extended possessions and offset their 32% eFG mark. Duke enjoyed a 56-43 rebounding edge and a 25-14 edge on the offensive glass.

Of added significance
By intermission the Blue Devils already had their defensive stamp on the contest:


The second half , Duke shot 28% (8 of 29). In addition they had one field goal (a Jon Scheyer 15 foot jumper) the final 12 minutes. Teams chart possessions on the bench. UCONN coach Jim Calhoun noted there was one point in the second half Duke scored once in ten possessions, yet the Huskies could not take advantage and seize the opportunity. UConn did not hit a three pointer. They were 0 for 4 but that was not a huge concern in Calhoun’s estimation because they opted to penetrate and attack the rim. Duke was 6 of 18 from beyond the arc. Virtually overlooked was Duke’s excellent turnover rate against an opponent whose defensive press was a major concern. In a game where lane penetration was not for the faint of heart, four players fouled out, two from each team. Duke’s Jon Scheyer (tournament MVP) led all scorers with 19 points. Nolan Smith added 16 for Duke. Jerome Dyson paced UConn with 15. Lance Thomas (5) and Brian Zoubek (7) did appreciable damage with those totals un the offensive boards. The game featured two hall of fame coaches with a combined five national championships and over 1600 wins.

"We held them to 28% shooting and they scored eight field goals the second half and we lost. I can’t remember something like that happening to us." - Jim Calhoun

"We are pleased and feel privileged to win the Pre-Season NIT. Especially with the Carlesimo name engraved on the championship trophy." - Mike Krzyzewski

* Next up a run down of tendencies from the three prior games from the Pre-Season NIT.

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