The Duke Blue Devils made North Carolina look bad on Wednesday night in Chapel Hill. Tim Brando and Billy Packer kept saying the Heels needed to get the ball inside to Tyler Hansbrough but they wouldn’t do it. If you were following the game you didn’t need Brando and Packer to tell you the obvious.
Duke made North Carolina look silly and even though UNC has better overall talent position by position that talent doesn’t add up to a team and that’s what Duke has. It would be hard to define what position the Duke players are occupying because they are in constant movement, just looking for the chance to can another 3-point shot. Duke is running and they are gunning and they are knocking down those shots, at least they were last night in the Dean E. Smith Center.
North Carolina missed Ty Lawson and Quentin Thomas didn’t play worth a hoot, but more credit should go to Duke for the job they did, than heavy blame being laid on Thomas for his misques. With Paulus, Scheyer, Henderson, Singler, and company Duke is for real and they are real fast and they have a quick trigger finger when it comes to releasing those threes. The Blue Devils are the top team in the ACC today and they deserve that number one position. Here’s what theacc.com is saying about last night’s game.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) – Duke has spent the entire season erasing memories of last year and after an impressive win against their biggest rivals, the Blue Devils are starting to look like a team that fits right in with their storied tradition.
Greg Paulus scored 18 points and was one of six players in double figures in the second-ranked Blue Devils’ 89-78 win over the third-ranked Tar Heels on Wednesday night, ending a three-game losing streak in the heated rivalry.
Jon Scheyer added 17 points for Duke (20-1, 8-0 Atlantic Coast Conference), which repeatedly knocked down 3-point shots to control the game almost the entire way. Duke led by as many as 11 points in the first half and never trailed after the break, beating the short-handed Tar Heels for the first time since the 2005-06 season.
Picked to finish second in the ACC, the Blue Devils figured to be too small up front to contend with the favored Tar Heels this year. Yet behind a spread-the-floor attack that creates matchup problems all over the court, Duke is alone atop the league and looking like a good bet to win the regular-season race.
Duke shot 46 percent and went 13-for-29 from 3-point range, with Paulus going 6-for-8 from behind the arc. That was just too much on the perimeter for the Tar Heels (21-2, 6-2), who played without injured point guard Ty Lawson and seemed like they had to fight the entire way just to stay within reach.
Tyler Hansbrough had 28 points and 18 rebounds in what became virtually a one-man effort, but the Tar Heels looked a step off all night with Lawson watching from the bench after spraining his left ankle in the weekend win at Florida State.
North Carolina twice closed to within a point early in the second half, but Duke never wavered or looked flustered in a hostile environment.