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  1. #1

    The Season To Date-A Good Christmas Gift

    On the day before Christmas, I am trying to forget about the loss to a good Pitt team in a game that should have never made it to OT.

    Looking at the whole picture I think that 10-1 season to date makes a good Christmas gift. Duke has beaten 4 quality opponents in Illinois, Wisconsin, Marquette, and Davidson and nearly beat Pitt while not playing or shooting well. Duke's returnees have played pretty solid. Kyle Singler is as good as advertised, King is maybe a bit better than most thought, and Nolan Smith shows some signs of being explosive.

    Even though the Pitt game leaves a bad after-taste for the holidays, all in all the flavor of the season has been pretty good and will get better in the New Year.

  2. #2
    Yes, a very nice Christmas gift. My other alma mater(Vandy) has given an 11-0 record to start the year, so it is a bountiful Christmas indeed. Vandy's schedule is rather light, but I shouldn't be complaining about a gift should I?

  3. #3
    I ditto the sentiment about both teams' records at the moment. An early season loss for Duke may be a blessing in disguise, showing the guys that they cannot allow themselves to be out-hustled as they were in the Pitt game. I expect to see a very hungry team against Cornell (hopefully I'll find a way to get into the game now that I'm home for winter break!)

    Also, as a current Vandy student, 11-0 is a good sign so far, and having beaten two ACC teams going into SEC play will definitely be good experience.

  4. #4

    It's good to see someone different...

    doing well in the SEC. I hope that the Commodores can keep it up through the season. It's nice that the Holiday Season can carry a double bonus this time around for someone!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    North Carolina

    We are a finesse oriented program to date

    Speaking as a former point guard and long time Duke fan; we seem to be more of a finesse oriented program/team in recent years. No, I won't rehash the usual critiques posted on this board, regarding recruiting, weaknesses of particular players, minutes of players and stats. One poster said we used to have a mystique about us; one could argue that that mystique has faded and become the source of inspiration teams use to beat us. Duke is good and teams know this; but it's toughness is questionable and I believe teams have picked up on this. They seem to lack a consistent fire within to win. No one player has shown the vocal and tough leadership needed on the court.

    This is not a knock on the players, because as one poster stated, these are young men playing on a national stage with pressure I can't even fathom. They ought to be allowed time to grow and develop in their skills as say, me or you in our respective professions. This team may be a year or two away from developing that toughness and maturity needed to finish games. I believe it's hard to teach toughness; that's something that maybe has to develop in you as you mature as a player.

    One critique is; with so many weapons, it's hard to observe who does have that fire and toughness. unless you are one of the coaches who see the players in practice daily. Our strengths are shooting from the perimeter and spreading the court for kick-outs and sensational plays. But to win tough games such as Pitt and others we will play, will require some grit and grind from somewhere? Some bang inside, toughness and courage from these guys. You always have to look at the top. They are the ones who put this together.

    Summation: continue encouraging more of the scorers mentality in Nolan Smith, aruably our best ball handler and possibly the best in creating his own shot. The thought being, lose the battle to win the war in March. Mine some more minutes from Zoubek; at 7 foot, its hard to believe he cant contribute more to this team. Rest Scheyer more, he's getting alot of undue pressure put on him, and probably will get more the more he plays. See what else King can do. Find more minutes for Lance. And allow Henderson to use his athletic ability to carry us when noone else will. Nelson, continue being consistent, strong and tough. Singler, damn, the guy is good! K definitely got this one right. Team, be strong and don't let those other teams intimidate you. Daniels gone

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Los Angeles

    I Agree, a blessing in disguise

    Although we should have won the Pitt game, hands down, I truly feel it is a blessing 'in disguise.' Our Dukies is a wonderful, YOUNG team. And I consider the Pitt game a GOOD lose. I know and the team knows, it should have won the sucker. Good for them to know this early in the season, that the "killer instinct" that was missing last year, needs to rear its ugly head now, and NOW and NOW. Good lesson to be learned -- and I think this game will go a long way to address that issue.

    As the season goes on after the holidays and into the ACC battles, I think this is something from which our guys will learn -- and carry forth. Pitt has a terrific team -- and kudos to them for this win. But come another day...we'd give them MORE than the run for their money... Much more.

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