First off, let’s not bury the lead. Why in the world did Zion not play at all in the second half? He got poked in the eye but every shot they had of him on the sideline, both of his eyes looked perfectly fine to me (my moms an eye doctor, I know what I’m talking about). It ultimately didn’t end up meaning much but I need answers as to why he was stapled to the bench.
Anyways, OH MY GOD. RJ Barrett had 32 points on 10-19 (4-7 from three) shooting and looked basically unstoppable in the absence of Zion. But the main story was Cam Reddish. He’s almost been like the exiled child with Zion, Barrett and Tre Jones getting most of the shine so far. He’s been struggling shooting but he gave Duke 23 points on 9-15 shooting including 4-7 from three.
Reddish looked a lot more comfortable today than I’ve seen him in a while. He looked aggressive all game in the absence of Zion. As did Barrett. I don’t mean this in a bad way, simply an observation, but Duke looks a lot better when it’s just Barrett in crunch time as opposed to having Zion and Barrett on the floor at the same time. The floor is spaced a lot better and Barrett likes to be “the guy” in these type of situations, which isn’t a bad thing but when you have a guy like ZION FREAKING WILLIAMSON, it’s okay to give the ball up a couple of times.
It took approximately 85 minutes for this last play to happen. Between the replay on who the ball went out on, the timeouts and TV Teddy Valentine I didn’t know if this play was ever going to happen. But Florida State defended this terribly. They focused in on Barrett after the Bolden screen. Then keyed in on Bolden on the roll to the basket. They completely forgot about the other top 5 pick in Cam Reddish and it was the easiest catch and shoot game winner in the history of basketball (you can quote me on that).
Next up? A date with Syracuse on Monday night. It should be fun considering Syracuse fans treat the Duke like their National Championship while us Duke fans treat it like a regular January ACC game.
Cam Reddish, I love you. Thank you, next.