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View Full Version : With Bolden out, will we have a Vrank sighting this postseason?



scottdude8
03-14-2019, 11:24 AM
As ecstatic as we all are that Zion is BACK TONIGHT, we also have to remember that we still haven't completely shaken the injury bug with Marques Bolden out for the ACC Tournament (and probably longer). I would assume that any of Javin, Jack, or Alex would start in his place depending upon the matchup... it wouldn't shock me to see Alex start tonight and Zion to play the "5" against the zone. But going forward, especially with Javin's tendency to get in foul trouble, I wonder whether Vrank might have to step in and play a handful of key minutes in March. He's shown that he's capable in spot duty at various points throughout his career... not stellar, not good, but "capable", meaning that his presence alone for a few minutes isn't going to cost us a game. I'm of the mindset that if we want to accomplish our goals this postseason, there's going to be a moment where Vrank is going to have to come in and hold his own, especially if we get matched up against a team with a dominant rebounder or especially tall big. For example, what if we face UCF and 7-foot-6 Tacko Fall? As limited as he is, I would imagine having Vrank in there with the sole purpose of boxing him out and keeping him from the rim for a handful of minutes would be extremely useful, especially if Javin is already in foul trouble or fatigued.

Has anyone else had this thought that Vrank may be the proverbial "rabbit out of the hat" this season? It would be a great way for a senior to go out considering how great a teammate and practice player he has (by all reports) been throughout his career.

kAzE
03-14-2019, 11:33 AM
I kind of doubt it, unless really bad foul trouble happens. We have 8 players. NO MORE INJURIES (knock on wood).

RJ, Zion, Cam, Tre, Jack, Javin, Alex, and Jordan

That's usually as deep as Coach K goes in the postseason. Javin, Zion, and Jack will play center by committee.

Mtn.Devil.91.92.01.10.15
03-14-2019, 11:34 AM
Depends on foul trouble. I'd be surprised if we didn't see him at some point in the next 9 games.

More interesting question: who do we see first, Baker or Vrank?

CrazyNotCrazie
03-14-2019, 11:38 AM
As ecstatic as we all are that Zion is BACK TONIGHT, we also have to remember that we still haven't completely shaken the injury bug with Marques Bolden out for the ACC Tournament (and probably longer). I would assume that any of Javin, Jack, or Alex would start in his place depending upon the matchup... it wouldn't shock me to see Alex start tonight and Zion to play the "5" against the zone. But going forward, especially with Javin's tendency to get in foul trouble, I wonder whether Vrank might have to step in and play a handful of key minutes in March. He's shown that he's capable in spot duty at various points throughout his career... not stellar, not good, but "capable", meaning that his presence alone for a few minutes isn't going to cost us a game. I'm of the mindset that if we want to accomplish our goals this postseason, there's going to be a moment where Vrank is going to have to come in and hold his own, especially if we get matched up against a team with a dominant rebounder or especially tall big. For example, what if we face UCF and 7-foot-6 Tacko Fall? As limited as he is, I would imagine having Vrank in there with the sole purpose of boxing him out and keeping him from the rim for a handful of minutes would be extremely useful, especially if Javin is already in foul trouble or fatigued.

Has anyone else had this thought that Vrank may be the proverbial "rabbit out of the hat" this season? It would be a great way for a senior to go out considering how great a teammate and practice player he has (by all reports) been throughout his career.

I highly doubt it, but if it were to happen, tonight is as good a night as any as Vrank could be used to bang around Chukwu for a little while. I personally think it is a good idea as he could buy us a few minutes of rest while helping to wear down the opponent. Of course, tonight would theoretically also be a good night to get Baker involved as he is allegedly one of our best shooters, but I'm not counting on that either.

scottdude8
03-14-2019, 11:38 AM
I kind of doubt it, unless really bad foul trouble happens. We have 8 players. NO MORE INJURIES (knock on wood).

RJ, Zion, Cam, Tre, Jack, Javin, Alex, and Jordan

That's usually as deep as Coach K goes in the postseason. Javin, Zion, and Jack will play center by committee.

True... I'd expect those 8 to play 95% of the minutes. But of them only Javin is a "forward/center" in the truest, old fashioned sense. Wouldn't you think that, if we had to match up against a team that has an old-fashioned center, we'd rather have Vrank come out and guard him for 5-10 minutes as opposed to put Zion on him for long stretches and risk him getting into foul trouble? That's my thinking... not that we're gonna see Vrank for 5 minutes a game, but that we could see him for 5-10 minutes in AN important game.

mattman91
03-14-2019, 11:41 AM
I love Vrank, but what about J Rob?

he has size, and actually has a decent three point shot when open. Also a bit more mobile than Vrank.

kAzE
03-14-2019, 11:42 AM
True... I'd expect those 8 to play 95% of the minutes. But of them only Javin is a "forward/center" in the truest, old fashioned sense. Wouldn't you think that, if we had to match up against a team that has an old-fashioned center, we'd rather have Vrank come out and guard him for 5-10 minutes as opposed to put Zion on him for long stretches and risk him getting into foul trouble? That's my thinking... not that we're gonna see Vrank for 5 minutes a game, but that we could see him for 5-10 minutes in AN important game.

I'm actually not concerned at all with Zion getting in foul trouble on defense. His body control is so good, he usually avoids fouls even when contesting shots on the interior. I'm much more concerned with him picking up dumb charging fouls where guys are flopping all over the place, and if a big man is guarding him, that's less likely to happen.

yancem
03-14-2019, 11:50 AM
I would hope so, at least in games with true centers. If Javin gets in foul trouble (quite likely), I don't want to play Zion extensive minutes at the 5 against 6'10'' or > centers. Not that he can handle it or even cause the mismatch on the offensive side of the ball but it will wear him down and likely chains him to the paint on D which negates some of his ability to get steals. Vrank isn't likely to produce much on O but then again neither is Javin. On D he'll likely pick up a couple of fouls but again, so will Javin. I think that Vrank is more than capable of playing some solid minutes (5-10) without being much of a liability.

Now if we can harass the opposing guards and really push the pace then playing Javin and Zion might force the opponent to go small to match us. In that case, Vrank won't be needed.

WVDUKEFAN
03-14-2019, 11:59 AM
I would hope so, at least in games with true centers. If Javin gets in foul trouble (quite likely), I don't want to play Zion extensive minutes at the 5 against 6'10'' or > centers. Not that he can handle it or even cause the mismatch on the offensive side of the ball but it will wear him down and likely chains him to the paint on D which negates some of his ability to get steals. Vrank isn't likely to produce much on O but then again neither is Javin. On D he'll likely pick up a couple of fouls but again, so will Javin. I think that Vrank is more than capable of playing some solid minutes (5-10) without being much of a liability.

Now if we can harass the opposing guards and really push the pace then playing Javin and Zion might force the opponent to go small to match us. In that case, Vrank won't be needed.

More importantly, we need to spell the big 3 on occasion. Even if it's only for a couple minutes.

devildeac
03-14-2019, 12:05 PM
I'm actually not concerned at all with Zion getting in foul trouble on defense. His body control is so good, he usually avoids fouls even when contesting shots on the interior. I'm much more concerned with him picking up dumb charging fouls where guys are flopping all over the place, and if a big man is guarding him, that's less likely to happen.

Admittedly a different decade, but surely (not Shirley) you're not forgetting hansflopper and his Oscar-worthy, repeated fish-like performances. :mad:

kAzE
03-14-2019, 12:12 PM
Admittedly a different decade, but surely (not Shirley) you're not forgetting hansflopper and his Oscar-worthy, repeated fish-like performances. :mad:

I would pay to see that matchup. I doubt even a college aged Hansbrough had the foot speed to keep up with Zion.

I imagine Zion's matchup with Luke Maye this Friday should be a reasonable facsimile of Hansbrough.

flyingdutchdevil
03-14-2019, 12:17 PM
Zion isn't playing anywhere near 40 min. And we're playing Cuse without their best player.

Vrank plays at least 3+ min today.

TruBlu
03-14-2019, 12:17 PM
I would pay to see that matchup. I doubt even a college aged Hansbrough had the foot speed to keep up with Zion.

Hansbroughís foot speed was so fast that the refs couldnít see them moving.

Matches
03-14-2019, 12:19 PM
If Vrank is on the floor for anything other than a very short cameo appearance, or in garbage time, something has gone horribly wrong. Great teammate by all accounts but we do not want him on the floor in competitive games.

plimnko
03-14-2019, 12:37 PM
I'm actually not concerned at all with Zion getting in foul trouble on defense. His body control is so good, he usually avoids fouls even when contesting shots on the interior. I'm much more concerned with him picking up dumb charging fouls where guys are flopping all over the place, and if a big man is guarding him, that's less likely to happen.

as long as tv ted is out there, you have to worry

Troublemaker
03-14-2019, 01:18 PM
Has anyone else had this thought that Vrank may be the proverbial "rabbit out of the hat" this season? It would be a great way for a senior to go out considering how great a teammate and practice player he has (by all reports) been throughout his career.

It's within the realm of possibility. The historical comparison might be dusting off Michael Thompson to guard Chris Kaman. But it would be unplanned and not the result of Vrank receiving a planned 5-10 mpg.

Still really unlikely though since (1) Zion-at-center is such a mismatch for Duke and could potentially be used to play the opposing center off the floor, and (2) Vrank would change our defensive scheme. I've only seen Vrank drop on ball screens this season when usually we want to switch or lateral contain around the 3-pt line.


I would hope so, at least in games with true centers. If Javin gets in foul trouble (quite likely), I don't want to play Zion extensive minutes at the 5 against 6'10'' or > centers. Not that he can handle it or even cause the mismatch on the offensive side of the ball but it will wear him down and likely chains him to the paint on D which negates some of his ability to get steals. Vrank isn't likely to produce much on O but then again neither is Javin. On D he'll likely pick up a couple of fouls but again, so will Javin. I think that Vrank is more than capable of playing some solid minutes (5-10) without being much of a liability.

Can't see that with all the switching we'd do. Plus, many of his steals come as the result of stripping guards that enter the paint.


Zion isn't playing anywhere near 40 min. And we're playing Cuse without their best player.

Vrank plays at least 3+ min today.

That would probably take an epic blowout of 25+ points. Even with a very comfortable 15-20 point win, for example, we're probably talking about a lot of stallball in the closing minutes with the starters in.

The line is only Duke -11.5, last I checked.

kako
03-14-2019, 02:28 PM
I would say that unless there's a blowout, major foul trouble for the regulars or an injury (or two), I'd be surprised if he's in for more than ~2-3 minutes in any game. Even with Zion back at less than full minutes and DeLaurier's penchant for fouls. I wouldn't be stunned to see Vrank in for very limited spot service, but I fear he's too slow to run the court and be effective at either end over any stretch of a game. Still, I'd be rooting for him to hold down the fort while he's in.

9F

jv001
03-14-2019, 02:42 PM
I'll say if Vrank plays it'll be in the first half. I don't see Coach K playing him in a close game. However if Duke's ahead by 15-20 points with a minute to go, Vrank could get on the court.

Next question, how many minutes will Zion play tonight? If he only get's around 25-30 minutes, Javin better stay out of foul trouble. GoDuke!

jimsumner
03-14-2019, 02:47 PM
Let's go back to last week. Williamson out for both games. Bolden misses most of second half v, Wake Forest. Bolden misses almost entire game against UNC.

With the exception of the 3 minutes he got as the senior-day starter against Wake, we never saw Vrankovic. Duke played six players the entire second half against UNC.


With Williamson back it's hard to sketch a positive scenario in which Vrankovic plays more than a cameo in a competitive game.


I'm sorry if that comes across as harsh. But he's in the final month of his college career and I think it's a bit late to expect a Zoubekian senior jump.

sagegrouse
03-14-2019, 03:37 PM
I'll say if Vrank plays it'll be in the first half. I don't see Coach K playing him in a close game. However if Duke's ahead by 15-20 points with a minute to go, Vrank could get on the court.

Next question, how many minutes will Zion play tonight? If he only get's around 25-30 minutes, Javin better stay out of foul trouble. GoDuke!

If we're ahead in a runaway, Coach will clear the bench to rest the players for tomorrow's game. I actually expect a close game -- Syracuse is playing 'possum.

Duke79UNLV77
03-14-2019, 03:40 PM
I love Vrank, but what about J Rob?

he has size, and actually has a decent three point shot when open. Also a bit more mobile than Vrank.

I agree. I think if you donít ask JRob to do too much, heís actually pretty good player.

construe
03-14-2019, 04:05 PM
I agree. I think if you donít ask JRob to do too much, heís actually pretty good player.

Funny...if you don't ask me to shoot...or dribble...or defend...I'm also a pretty good player! :D

CrazyNotCrazie
03-14-2019, 04:20 PM
Let's go back to last week. Williamson out for both games. Bolden misses most of second half v, Wake Forest. Bolden misses almost entire game against UNC.

With the exception of the 3 minutes he got as the senior-day starter against Wake, we never saw Vrankovic. Duke played six players the entire second half against UNC.


With Williamson back it's hard to sketch a positive scenario in which Vrankovic plays more than a cameo in a competitive game.


I'm sorry if that comes across as harsh. But he's in the final month of his college career and I think it's a bit late to expect a Zoubekian senior jump.

Let me preface this by saying that I don't think there is any circumstance that Vrank gets major minutes. That being said, it is much more likely for him to get some minutes tonight than vs. Carolina. In that game Bolden went down early - there was no preparation for Vrank to get on the court. Also, Carolina is a very quick team, which is the exact opposite of Vrank - he would have had a very hard time keeping up. As I noted above, Syracuse is not nearly as quick and actually has someone he can match up against. So again, I doubt he plays more than 5 minutes, but I think it would be smart to consider playing him for 5 minutes to bang around Chukwo and give our other guys a rest, and I don't think he would be a huge liability. If we win and play Carolina on Friday, I think he will revert to virtually zero PT.

jimsumner
03-14-2019, 04:44 PM
Let me preface this by saying that I don't think there is any circumstance that Vrank gets major minutes. That being said, it is much more likely for him to get some minutes tonight than vs. Carolina. In that game Bolden went down early - there was no preparation for Vrank to get on the court. Also, Carolina is a very quick team, which is the exact opposite of Vrank - he would have had a very hard time keeping up. As I noted above, Syracuse is not nearly as quick and actually has someone he can match up against. So again, I doubt he plays more than 5 minutes, but I think it would be smart to consider playing him for 5 minutes to bang around Chukwo and give our other guys a rest, and I don't think he would be a huge liability. If we win and play Carolina on Friday, I think he will revert to virtually zero PT.

Vrankovic played three minutes at Syracuse, in a game that Williamson sat out. He did not play at all in the OT loss at Cameron, when Williamson played but Reddish and (mostly) Jones did not. K played White for 42 minutes in that game, Bolden for 34. So, the evidence strongly suggests that K does not view Syracuse as a favorable matchup for Vrankovic. Three minutes or so might be a ceiling.

Indoor66
03-14-2019, 05:52 PM
Funny...if you don't ask me to shoot...or dribble...or defend...I'm also a pretty good player! :D

I would add run and jump to that list._😂

scottdude8
03-15-2019, 09:16 PM
Just gonna bump this back up for no particular reason...

WVDUKEFAN
03-15-2019, 09:25 PM
Vrank is having a great game. Wow. Keep it going big guy.

fuse
03-15-2019, 09:29 PM
Vrank is having a great game. Wow. Keep it going big guy.

+1. Looking good out there.

OZZIE4DUKE
03-15-2019, 09:29 PM
Vrank is having a great game. Wow. Keep it going big guy.
2ípoints and 2 assists in the first half! Great lob assist to Zion for a dunk. And Goldwire got his assist on Vrankís bucket. Who would have thought weíd say those things in the first half of a carolina ACC tournament game? Tied at the half. LGD GTHc!

Wander
03-15-2019, 09:48 PM
No matter what happens the rest of this game, scottdude8 is my MOTM. Great call!

Mtn.Devil.91.92.01.10.15
03-15-2019, 09:51 PM
Vrank and Goldwire earning their playing time. This could never have happened without burning the redshirt!

Jk

WVDUKEFAN
03-15-2019, 10:02 PM
Vrank and Goldwire earning their playing time. This could never have happened without burning the redshirt!

Jk

Lol. Youíre my hero. I canít give you anymore positive comments. The forum wonít allow me.

Matches
03-15-2019, 10:40 PM
If Vrank is on the floor for anything other than a very short cameo appearance, or in garbage time, something has gone horribly wrong. Great teammate by all accounts but we do not want him on the floor in competitive games.

This post aged well.

Happy to be spectacularly wrong.

gus
03-15-2019, 10:50 PM
This post aged well.

Happy to be spectacularly wrong.

To be fair - you were half right. Things were going pretty bad when Vrank came in.

kako
03-15-2019, 10:53 PM
I, too, had low expectations for Vrank... and posted so. I take it all back. And even though Zion was really MOTM, I voted for Vrank to repent for my sins on this string.

As I said, not exactly the Fred Lind game. But I really think whenever someone talks about Vrank in the future, this game will come up.

9F

DangerDevil
03-15-2019, 10:55 PM
Just gonna bump this back up for no particular reason...

Now if you had Goldwire playing as much as he did that would be impressive!:cool:

HereBeforeCoachK
03-16-2019, 07:28 AM
This post aged well.

Happy to be spectacularly wrong.

were there any posts from way back about how RJ or Cam were actually better than Zion?????

devildeac
03-16-2019, 07:32 AM
were there any posts from way back about how RJ or Cam were actually better than Zion?????

I'm happy your multiple double vodkas from last PM have worn off. :D

camion
03-16-2019, 08:23 AM
were there any posts from way back about how RJ or Cam were actually better than Zion?????

Many have said that Zion will be exposed when he faces real competition. I fully believe this to be true.


The thing is that Zion has no real competition, not in high school, not in college. Perhaps in the NBA, but maybe not there either.

Zion is a unicorn with mad hops. :)

CameronBornAndBred
03-16-2019, 10:13 AM
This is a really fun thread to read in hindsight, both the posts of optimism, and the realists.
Hell, even K said "I don't think Antonio expected to be playing tonight."

dukelifer
03-16-2019, 10:26 AM
Many have said that Zion will be exposed when he faces real competition. I fully believe this to be true.


The thing is that Zion has no real competition, not in high school, not in college. Perhaps in the NBA, but maybe not there either.

Zion is a unicorn with mad hops. :)

The Unicorn league with Giannis, Lebron, Davis and Durant is pretty tough

Billy Dat
03-16-2019, 10:47 AM
Just gonna bump this back up for no particular reason...

You deserve it, bro! Great call!!!!!

WVDUKEFAN
03-16-2019, 10:55 AM
Many have said that Zion will be exposed when he faces real competition. I fully believe this to be true.


The thing is that Zion has no real competition, not in high school, not in college. Perhaps in the NBA, but maybe not there either.

Zion is a unicorn with mad hops. :)

I agree. Iíve never seen anything like him. Ever.

jimsumner
03-16-2019, 11:57 AM
K said after the game that Jack White was too small to guard UNC's bigs, which is why he went to Vrankovic when JDL got into foul trouble.

But White had nine rebounds against the Heels last week. But he didn't do much against Syracuse and looked bad in his opening stint last night. He's not in a good place right now. He's struggling and his body language isn't helping. I think Duke is going to need him to get out of his funk.

FSU has some size, some quick, some not so quick. Vrank might get some burn against the not-so-quick size tonight.

Hamilton does a better job of using his bench than almost anyone. So, getting a few minutes here and there might be useful.

jv001
03-16-2019, 12:45 PM
K said after the game that Jack White was too small to guard UNC's bigs, which is why he went to Vrankovic when JDL got into foul trouble.

But White had nine rebounds against the Heels last week. But he didn't do much against Syracuse and looked bad in his opening stint last night. He's not in a good place right now. He's struggling and his body language isn't helping. I think Duke is going to need him to get out of his funk.

FSU has some size, some quick, some not so quick. Vrank might get some burn against the not-so-quick size tonight.

Hamilton does a better job of using his bench than almost anyone. So, getting a few minutes here and there might be useful.

At the beginning of the season, Jack looked so strong grabbing rebounds and loose balls. Now he's letting them slip out of his hands. It almost looks like he's staying away from contact. His arms are really stretched out away from his body, where earlier he was not having to reach so far. Well, that's how it looks to me. One thing for sure he has regressed in more areas than just his 3 point shots. GoDuke!

Dukehk
03-16-2019, 12:51 PM
Jack has lost so much confidence as the year has gone on. He was immense for us earlier in the year both defensively, on the glass and also a deadly shooter from 3.

All that seems to have evaporated since the Syracuse game.

Iím still holding out hope he can put it together for the final push and if anyone can bring it out of him itís coach K. Just imagine how good we could be with a confident Jack hitting 3ís and a more consistent Cam Reddish.

jimsumner
03-16-2019, 01:03 PM
Jack has lost so much confidence as the year has gone on. He was immense for us earlier in the year both defensively, on the glass and also a deadly shooter from 3.

All that seems to have evaporated since the Syracuse game.

Iím still holding out hope he can put it together for the final push and if anyone can bring it out of him itís coach K. Just imagine how good we could be with a confident Jack hitting 3ís and a more consistent Cam Reddish.

Don't get me wrong, I would love for White to find his 3-point mojo. But even if that shot isn't falling, he can still rebound, defend, lead. I'd like him to concentrate on that and if the 3s come, fine. But he can still help Duke without the 3.

HereBeforeCoachK
03-16-2019, 01:05 PM
Don't get me wrong, I would love for White to find his 3-point mojo. But even if that shot isn't falling, he can still rebound, defend, lead. I'd like him to concentrate on that and if the 3s come, fine. But he can still help Duke without the 3.

I agree with this.....but I'm not sure he realizes it......

BigWayne
03-16-2019, 01:17 PM
Many have said that Zion will be exposed when he faces real competition. I fully believe this to be true.


The thing is that Zion has no real competition, not in high school, not in college. Perhaps in the NBA, but maybe not there either.

Zion is a unicorn with mad hops. :)

He has been exposed all right. Exposed to be a phenomenon that forces opponents and broadcasters to run out of ways to deal with him and describe him. Best part is that he does it all with a smile that is the definition of a kid in a candy store.

dukelifer
03-16-2019, 01:47 PM
Don't get me wrong, I would love for White to find his 3-point mojo. But even if that shot isn't falling, he can still rebound, defend, lead. I'd like him to concentrate on that and if the 3s come, fine. But he can still help Duke without the 3.

I donít understand with all the struggles of White and AOC of late why Baker is not playing. I have to believe he can bring what Buddy Boeheim does. Sure his D is probably not there but not playing even a few minutes is a confidence reducer. It would be different if White and AOC were playing well.

jimsumner
03-16-2019, 03:32 PM
I agree with this....but I'm not sure he realizes it...

I'm sure he realizes it. But translating belief into action is not automatic.

He's one of those guys who beats himself up after a mistake.

In some sense, I'm not sure he's recovered from his Wake gaffe. He was devastated after that. And Duke won.

Getting Reddish back on track might be priority no. 1 for Duke next week. But getting White back on track might be 1A.

HereBeforeCoachK
03-16-2019, 05:37 PM
I'm sure he realizes it. But translating belief into action is not automatic.

He's one of those guys who beats himself up after a mistake.
.

That resonates, and in some sense, that's really what I meant by him "not realizing it" - I was kind of speaking euphemistically. You do have to internalize these things to bring them from potential to kinetic...and like you said, that ain't automatic.

scottdude8
03-16-2019, 07:45 PM
Well, Vrank was at the scorers table but swapped out for Jack, so it looks like weíll be seeing some more of our lone senior again tonight. Best prediction ever, haha.

scottdude8
03-16-2019, 08:23 PM
Orrrrrr I anti-jinxed it.

Mtn.Devil.91.92.01.10.15
03-16-2019, 08:29 PM
Orrrrrr I anti-jinxed it.

Jack White has three fouls and no points. Vrank may see some run against FSU's size.