Who should start vs. NC State? (Obviously, pick 5 guys)
Feel free to post your reasoning below.
Last edited by Jumbo; 03-07-2007 at 01:00 AM.
DeMarcus Nelson - our leading scorer and second leading rebounder
Josh McRoberts - 2nd team all-acc and defensive all-acc team
Greg Paulus - his 3-point shooting is critical to our success
Jon Scheyer - scores points and plays defense
Brian Zoubek - the intangible. We need him to get off to a strong start
If it was who *should* start in a perfect world, I'd include GH...
Now that Henderson is out, I think the first 4 starters are no-brainers. You have to go with Paulus, McRoberts, Nelson and Scheyer. The 5th guy is th toughie.
McClure plays excellent D and rebounds well, but has been so hesitant to shoot lately that his guy has basically been able to shade toward McRoberts in the post. I think this is one of the reasons that McRoberts numbers have been down and why he has been spending more time outside of the lane the past few games.
Zoubek is a situational player only in my opinion. He can play against GT and UNC because they have 2 bigs in the game at the same time. Against other teams he is much less effective because a smaller big can beat him off the dribble so easily. I think he's a poor matchup for NC State.
I went with Lance even though he's been in a bit of a slump recently. Mostly because I think when he gets a few early points (even garbage buckets), it opens things up for McRoberts (or at least keeps defenders more honest). If he can stay out of foul trouble, I'd like to see him get 20 minutes.
Defense, defense, defense. Give me Dave McClure first.
We need a couple of scorers - best options against state are Greg and Jon.
DeMarcus needs to quit dribbling so much but I love him off the ball.
And of course, Josh. I'm hoping he has a great tournament.
Last edited by feldspar; 03-07-2007 at 10:06 AM.
-Paulus, Scheyer and McRoberts are no-brainers in any game.
-Nelson is a no-brainer with Henderson out.
-The last spot came down to Thomas vs. McClure (I don't think Zoubek should play much next to Josh, don't love his matchup next to NC State, and want someone who moves better in to start the game). Normally, I'd go with McClure. But without Henderson, Duke may need McClure to play some on the perimeter if Pocius doesn't play well or anyone gets in foul trouble. So, I don't want McClure to start at the 4 and pick up quick fouls, which could really mess up Duke's rotation.
Of course, by starting Thomas, there's a huge risk of foul trouble. But I like the idea of "jump-starting" him and having a steady hand in McClure ready off the bench.
1- Paulus - we need his shooting. A 6/2 Asst/TO ratio would be nice too
2- Nelson - we need his D and fast-break finishing. use of a pull-up jumper just inside the FT line would be nice too
3- Scheyer - we need him to break out of his slump shooting-wise
4- McRoberts - despite my frustration with his on-court decision-making we need his interior D, 15 pts from Josh would be very sweet
5- though i think McClure will get the start, Z should get it, state just doesn't have anybody of any quality at his size. His D has improved lately and he could just pick up some random points, whereas McClure has had a dramatic decrease in O productivity lately.
Playing Z, McClure and LT a combined total of 50-60 minutes would be a good rotation i think. Z with McRoberts sometimes, Z with either McClure or LT at other times, but prob'ly McRoberts with LT or McClure most of the time. Pocius will prob'ly spell Nelson and Scheyer at times, but i see Paulus, Nelson and Scheyer all playing 35+ minutes.
I think one very important thing is not to let state get off to a very fast start like UNC did last game. While he may be a bit of a liability on offense, he has proven that, especially against post up players (specifically as McCauley is) he can play good defense. Remember the way he came out against TH in the first game? I think McCauley and Costner will both be able to go right over McClure. Thats why I have
Paulus, Scheyer, Nelson, McRoberts are easy decisions for me. Like others have stated, the 5 spot comes down to McClure or Lance. I voted McClure. Yes, I'd like to see him be more offensive (seemed like his offense was getting better and better then is just disappeared), but his defense, rebounding, intangibles are still a great asset. With Lance or David, I don't see a wrong choice. Which ever one starts the other will probably be the first player off the bench. I see so much potential in Lance, he's so quick. I keep waiting for a breakout game for him because I think he's going to score a lot points for Duke in the paint in he career using his length and quickness. I respectfully disagree with steven52682 about McCauley and Costner going right over McClure. David plays defense quite well for his size and although they might get a few easy baskets, overall I like our chances with McClure playing D against these guys.
As for non-starters, Brian should get playing time to spell Josh and to create match up problems. The problem with getting Z playing time is that Josh can't seem to score anything but a dunk lately so having 2 big guys in the post with little scoring isn't great right now. I'd love to see Marty get Henderson's minutes and get the ball enough to get into the flow on offense. I think he'll do just fine.
Since we have 4 games to play in this tournament, it wouldn't hurt my feelings if K used the bench a lot....especially if we open up a good 2nd half lead.
I can't wait for Thursday night, something tells me that the incident with GH will just make this team play more together and with even more of a good attitude. It's just intuition but something tells me that this will just push this team in the right direction.
I think that although starting can be prestigious, this may be a situation where the fifth starter gets equal minutes to at least on of the guys off the bench. Once again, we'll probably have 4 guys with 32+ minutes (assuming no extreme foul situations) and the bench will pick up the slack. Marty will probably get a few extra minutes due to Henderson's suspension, but the 5th starter will probably be Dave. I'd guess that Lance will get close to the same minutes as Dave, while Marty and Zoubek will round out the rotation with 5-10minutes each.
In case it wasn't obvious, the 4 guys who will get the majority of the minutes in my mind are: Greg, Jon, Josh and Nelson
I went with Scheyer, McClure, McRoberts, Paulus and Nelson. I thought about Thomas but prefer McClure for defensive purposes.
McClure and Thomas were a toss-up in my inexpert opinion, but I liked the thoughts of McClure coming in for a spark off the bench with his hustle, good defense, getting the loose ball, etc. I would have had Henderson and McClure instead of Nelson and Thomas if Gerald was available.
Assuming that DeMarcus will continue to start in the post-season, I think that success in the ACC (and NCAA) tournament will depend largely on how well he and McRoberts produce. Duke will be pretty formidable if those two consistently produce offensively.
If they come up with 30-33 points between them in tournament games along with Henderson and Paulus scoring like they have been lately, Duke will be pretty tough to handle. That kind of offensive production and Duke's defense would be a pretty good 1-2 punch. But if Josh disappears like he did against Maryland and DeMarcus implodes in the lane on a regular basis, it will be a short stint in both the ACC and NCAA.
I am thinking positive thoughts about the tournaments.
Greg, Jon, DeMarcus, David, and Josh.
I'd give the nod to David over Lance right now just because David can give us that extra something. He always comes up with great rebounding (something Lance doesn't always provide, even with his height), finds his teammates pretty well, plays sound defense, and can occassionally give us some solid outside shooting. I just love David's game; it's so refreshing to see a player embrace his role as well as he does. As for Lance, he certainly brings energy and hustle to our team every game, but he hasn't been playing particulary well lately IMO and did not do much of anything against the Heels, so I'd bring him off the bench against NC State. However, Coach K is the best in the business, not me, so I guess we'll see.
BTW, I guess finding out what happened to DeMarcus would really help in determining who should start against the Pack. Anyone know any details?