Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bad break for Duke

Elliott Williams' decision to transfer from Duke on Wednesday suddenly breaks the ACC race wide open.

The Blue Devils will still be in the conversation to win the league, of course, because they have an edge in experience. But the loss of Williams, an athletic wing who only averaged 4.2 points per game, erodes their defensive abilities and overall quickness.

Assuredly, the Duke fan at-large feels for Williams. It's undoubtedly a bad break for the teenager and his family, but you also can't help but wince at what could have been for Duke in 2010.

Let's enter fantasyland, shall we? Admittedly, it's a dangerous venture, but given the precedent at UNC to hang on to stars for three and four years, it's not that outlandish to think both Gerald Henderson and John Wall could have been in Duke's lineup in October.

What could have been:

G John Wall
G Jon Scheyer
G Gerald Henderson
F Kyle Singler
F Brian Zoubek

G Elliot Williams
G Nolan Smith
F Ryan Kelly
F Lance Thomas
F Miles Plumlee
F Mason Plumlee

Whoa. Now take out Henderson or Wall, and it's still a Final Four team. Take out both and they still win the ACC. Take out Henderson, Wall and Williams, and Mike Krzyzewski's looking at:

G Smith
G Scheyer
G/F Singler
F Thomas
F Zoubek

G/F Kelly
F Miles Plumlee
F Mason Plumlee

Ouch. Still good but where are the guards? Without Williams, both Singler and Kelly will have to play the perimeter, which is fine for 3-point shooting purposes. But what about defense? You might actually see Coach K use a lot of 2-3 zone because there are no traditional perimeter reserves.

Either way, Jon Scheyer's going to shatter the ACC record for minutes-played this coming season.

And when it comes to the chase for the ACC title, Duke's suddenly in the same boat as UNC, Boston College or even Georgia Tech.

By the way, Duke hasn't been to the Final Four since 2004, a span of five years. Coach K has never gone more than five years between Final Four appearances at Duke.

Cue the Tar Heel fans, Laker conspiracy theorists and Duke haters.

- J.P. Giglio


Anonymous said...

Who ever wrote this is the worst writer in history....not a journalism major.

Roy>Rat said...

With Wall and Henderson the Heels would still win by 12 in Cameron. Roy ownes Rat. No way that K ever wins it all as long as Roy is around.

Anonymous said...

So is K headed to the Lakers?

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry but J.P. Giglio doesn't know squat about ACC Basketball. What a moron.

NO WAY Duke finishes top 3 in the ACC.

Duke is no longer in the hunt for an ACC regular season "title"

Duke will almost certainly play on Thursday at the ACC Tournament and they have no chance of winning it.

No how. No way. A'int gonna happen.

A 4th or 5th place finish is a stretch too, but Coach K has done too much over his career to take "no way" quite so far.

I think Duke wins between 6 and 9 games (with 7/8 being most likely).

Duke will probably still win some games they shouldn't early (but how tough will the schedule really be).

There will be the usual December/early January hype and then they are going to get beat up in conference play.

Josh said...

Agreed. Maybe top 3 finish this year! And a Final Four would ONLY happen with the first team listed.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

i bet if this occurred to the tarholes, they would still be chirping about winning the acc

typical two-faced idiots

Anonymous said...

fantasyland indeed. if you want to play the what if game.. then what if lawson and ellington had stayed for their senior years?

An it is common knowledge that if UNC had wanted John Wall all Roy had to do was offer.

Bad break for dook indeed. It's a bad break for the kid, but of course with all things dook it is never about the student athlete it is always about K-rat.

I wonder if the rat is bitching about Williams F-ing his program?.. what a tool.

Anonymous said...

WHERE IS WILLIAMS TRANSFERING TO? Somewhere a coach that promises him he will play - and not get bench rot on his ass. Look at all the fool McDonalds All Americans that have seen their NBA careers come to naught under the tutuledge of Mike the Rat faced liar. Bring you asses to UNC If you want to get NBA rich! Don't listen to his lies any longer. He does not know how to develope NBA talent. Look at poor JJ. When Steph Curry plays pro, he will be a bigtime star and he has the same talent JJ does. What the hell is ratface doing to you boys behind closed doors?

Anonymous said...

Like i have said before, Tarhole fans are some ignorant asses!

Anonymous said...

Czyz will get more run as well

Anonymous said...

yeah unc produces SOOOO much NBA Sean may right?

Anonymous said...

lmao at thinking curry is going to be a star

Anonymous said...

duke has had more top 1o draft picks and players in NBA than any other college program in the last 10 years. Look it up.

MichaelProcton said...

And more money paid to its alumni from NBA teams.

Anonymous said...

I am a proud "tarhole" as you guys filled with envy like to put it. In the present, we are the National Champions. In the past, we produced what most consider the best basketball player ever...actually a whole slew of them. In the future we will be national champions again within the next two years. Yeah, call us tarholes...ya don't get called names unless folks envy ya!

Anonymous said...

Giglio blows as usual. Worst writer for a subpar newspaper.

Anonymous said...

Uummmm "poor JJ" just played significant minutes in every game in the NBA Finals. I think he's doing ok.