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  • Duke Week

    So here we come to the beginning of another season. It feels like 200 years ago when we were subjected to the nightmare fuel of Olivier Sarr trying to play "center" and B.J. Boston trying to score in transition. Kentucky has a revamped roster but through two exhibitions and one scrimmage it's the most difficult to figure out team I've ever seen as a Kentucky fan. Literally anything could happen with this bunch.

    On the other side we have Duke, aka Coach K's final team. It gets conveniently forgotten but they were also terrible last season, finishing 13-11 and struggling with the deserted arena fallout of the pandemic. They will inarguably have the best player on the court tomorrow night in 6-10 Paolo Banchero. After that however Duke is a little like Kentucky in that they don't have that can't-miss NBA player on their roster. This is particularly true at guard, where Jeremy Roach, Trevor Keels, and AJ Griffin will get most of the minutes. None of those players is elite but I'm sure they'll have enough firepower to hurt you if you don't give them the proper respect. Roach averaged about 9 a game last season so he has some experience.

    This is one of the harder openers to call since I've been a fan. You just don't know what UK is going to look like, and Duke has a ton to prove as well. I would imagine Kentucky will have serious problems with Banchero, but as a Kentucky fan you hope TyTy Washington is the best guard on the court and has one of those Tyrese Maxey/Malik Monk kind of games we've seen in the Champions Classic and becomes a star right before our eyes.

    I'm going to say it will be ugly, putrid even, and the team that stays out of foul trouble the most ends up winning.

  • #2
    Definitely a game to have the television on mute and listen to Tom Leach call the game. I’ll be at work unfortunately, but will try to keep up with the score online.

    Could we maybe suggest that Brendan Canada try to pick a fight with Banchero and get him ejected?

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    • #3
      In a game like this with so many question marks and so many new players, I tend to side with the team who has the best player on the floor, and that will be Banchero.

      Add to that the major question marks on our front line, and I'm taking Duke by 8.

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      • #4
        I don't think it's going to be a Zion level beatdown but I would be pretty surprised if UK stays within 10-12 of Duke in this game. Banchero is a MAJOR problem.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by JFCats22 View Post
          I don't think it's going to be a Zion level beatdown but I would be pretty surprised if UK stays within 10-12 of Duke in this game. Banchero is a MAJOR problem.
          After Banchero, they have just as many question marks as we do. Probably more.

          Like I said, I think Duke wins by about 8. But beyond the obvious interior advantage, Kentucky has advantages in the backcourt and depth.

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          • #6
            Banchero creates a problem for this particular Kentucky team because we're so thin inside. With Mark Williams down there you're going to have to play a combination of Brooks, Toppin, and Collins on Banchero. Only Toppin seems to have the necessary energy and length to handle him...unless we get Good Brooks, and he shows up about as much as Good Alex Poythress.

            The good news is that a whistle or two on him early might pose as much of a problem for them as it would if Tshiebwe gets whistles for us.

            The Duke game is probably going to go like most every UK game this year: if we hit 12-15 threes we'll be right in it with a chance to win. Hit fewer than 10 and it's going to be extremely tough. This is why I'd like for Fredrick to come back, because anybody who can hit threes on this team needs to get some run. It's the one thing that this team looks like it's going to be able to really hang its hat on, which is so odd for a Cal team.

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            • #7
              ^^^^ Is Fredrick available to play in this game?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by 85 Fly View Post
                ^^^^ Is Fredrick available to play in this game?
                He's "available" but sounded like Cal probably won't play him with him only having practiced less than a week. He said he may put him in to run up and down a few times. I doubt he plays unless we're desperate for someone to hit a shot or we're up 20+ late.

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                • #9
                  You never know what will happen in a game like this. Everybody is worried about Banchero, and rightfully so, but if he gets a couple calls against him, he is done for at least a half. GO CATS!!!
                  John 3:3

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                  • #10
                    An interesting thing about Duke is that they only played one exhibition but they played a closed scrimmage against Villanova.

                    Reports are that they won that game. Banchero had 29 and in the highlights (of which there are several on YouTube) he and Moore look like the best players on the court.

                    Banchero is a known quantity obviously but Wendell Moore is a highly intriguing player too. Incredibly strong but last year he was a mediocre shooter. He could be a guy who really hurts the thinner, more undersized wings Kentucky has.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by lilproUK98 View Post

                      He's "available" but sounded like Cal probably won't play him with him only having practiced less than a week. He said he may put him in to run up and down a few times. I doubt he plays unless we're desperate for someone to hit a shot or we're up 20+ late.
                      I just listened to KSR interview and got the update-thanks. Good interview

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                      • #12
                        I love and hate basketball season starting. So much better for my stress and anxiety when UK isn't playing!!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JFCats22 View Post
                          I love and hate basketball season starting. So much better for my stress and anxiety when UK isn't playing!!
                          Seems like sometimes you seek out things to have anxiety about.

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                          • #14
                            Also, going back to Paolo Banchero.

                            He reminds me a little of Michael Porter Jr.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Will Lavender View Post

                              Seems like sometimes you seek out things to have anxiety about.
                              Until we're on the cusp of a final four again, UK b-ball has ceased to give me anxiety for some time. Since March 2019 to be exact. It's been a nice break, but I also kind of miss it. Caring so much.

                              Comment

                               

                              A Word From Our Founder

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                              Duke Week

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