banner
Caulton Tudor

Hairston torching D-League but didn't dominate Duke

Posted February 10, 2014

North Carolina's PJ Hairston during the Tar Heels' 87-77 title game loss to Miami in the 60th ACC Tournament on Sunday, March 17, 2013 in Greensboro, NC (Photo by Jack Morton).

— With Duke on the doorstep, it’s only natural that some North Carolina coaches, players and fans will have a few “what if” moments regarding P.J. Hairston this week.

There’s no question Hairston’s absence has severely weakened the team and perhaps will wind up bushwhacking the entire season. Had he played the entire season, UNC probably would be in the top 10 at this historically significant stage of the season.

At 6-4 in the ACC and 16-7 overall, the Heels probably won’t get back in the national top 20 -  even if they beat the Blue Devils (8-3, 19-5) Wednesday in Chapel Hill (9 p.m., WRAL-TV/620 The Buzz).

But over four career games against Duke, Hairston had only one big night and that came in UNC’s 73-68 loss last year on Feb. 13 (Mike Krzyzewski’s birthday) in Durham.

Hairston had 23 points and eight rebounds to lead the Heels, but he still missed six of seven 3-points attempts.

In the March 9 game at Carolina, Hairston had 14 points but missed five of six three's as Duke won easily, 69-53.

Then as a freshman in the 2011-12 season, Hairston played 15 minutes off the bench and scored only two points in Carolina’s 88-70 win at Durham (March 3, 2012) and got in for 10 minutes without scoring in Duke’s 85-84 win (Austin Rivers) at Chapel Hill on Feb. 8.

• • •
Hairston’s impact in the NBA Developmental League obviously underscores what he might have meant to the Tar Heels.

Through 10 games with the Texas Legends, he’s averaging 26.3 points and converting almost 40 percent of 3-points attempts behind the NBA’s arc (23 feet, nine inches compared to 20-9 in the NCAA).

Had Hairston played the entire season in the D-League, he would probably be the leading MVP candidate. At the moment, he’s the only D-League player projected to go in the first round of the NBA Draft (June 26) in New York. Most of the draft analysts rate him as a mid first-rounder.

Former Duke guard Seth Curry, who scored 31 points in the two wins over Carolina last season, is also doing well in the D-League, averaging 19.4 points through 21 games for the Santa Cruz Warriors.

Three former N.C. State players  - forwards Rich Howell and C.J. Leslie and guard C.J. Williams - are also having impressive seasons in the D-League.

Howell is averaging 18.5 points and 10 rebounds through 20 games with the Idaho Stampede. Howell’s teammate, former UNC guard Dexter Strickland, has had some injury problems and is averaging less than three points in nine games.

With the Erie Bay Bayhawks, Leslie is averaging 13.6 and 5.8 rebounds over 30 games.
Williams, in his second D-League season, is averaging 14.3 points and 4.1 rebounds for the Los Angeles D-Fenders.

• • •
Another familiar figure in the Carolina-Duke series who will not be in the Dean Dome on Wednesday is Chris Collins.

After 13 seasons on Krzyzewski’s staff, the 39-year-old Collins took the Northwestern job at the end of 2012-13 and is doing better than anyone expected in his first season.

Collins’ team is 12-12 overall and 5-6 in the Big Ten after being picked for last place in many of the preseason polls.

The Wildcats, 13-19 (4-14 Big Ten) last season under Bill Carmody, have won four of their last six, including a 65-56 win at 14th-ranked Wisconsin on Jan. 29.

42 Comments

Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • hollylama Feb 13, 2014

    Glad he found another opportunity.

  • LUKECAGE Feb 12, 2014

    Don't know the point of this story? I thought everybody had moved on from this.

  • HEELSrocknU Feb 12, 2014

    what a dumb article...PJ only showed flashes in his previous years. Ever heard of break out years tutor?....Roy even said that his preseason practices was the BEST gaurd he had ever coached. So yeah, "what IF"...let's just say there's a lotta of dook fans saying thank you jesus for Bubba not doing the right thing

  • Salatheal Hasty Feb 11, 2014
    user avatar

    This story is a waste of space...PJ is averaging 26pt/game in the D-League...his D-League points and what he did at UNC is a non factor for Wed. I got one for you Tudor "A. Rivers was clutch against the Tar Heel but is a non factor in the NBA"....Neither story will help their FORMER team tomorrow...LOL

  • dave437 Feb 11, 2014

    what is 'historically significant' about Feb. 10th, during a college basketball season?

  • packguy Feb 11, 2014

    "At the moment, he’s the only D-League player projected to go in the first round of the NBA Draft (June 26) in New York. Most of the draft analysts rate him as a mid first-rounder."

    Haven't most (99%) of the players in the D-League already been drafted and/or passed over in the draft? Hairston's case is fairly unusual, I think.

  • Jeanne Gunn Feb 11, 2014
    user avatar

    Tough crowd here today.

    Yeah, the Heels definitely miss Hairston's experience, toughness and three's, but he's not on the team anymore; end of story. Hairston isn't the first Heels player to do better after leaving the program - Harrison Barnes is doing well in the NBA. Some kids make great college players, others do better in the pros. At any rate, Carolina has moved on, and that's what's important.

  • Erik Sheahan Feb 11, 2014
    user avatar

    Who cares what he USED to do. He's no longer playing for UNC so his accolades now have no bearing on our UNC players. Go find another skeleton to dig up!

  • bluerules Feb 11, 2014

    Tudor is a poor excuse of a sports writer. Earth to Tudor. Hariston is a non story.

  • rx74u2nv Feb 10, 2014

    View quoted thread


    Best post here^

More...

 

 

  • NHL: Minnesota at Detroit

    Tomorrow at 12:00 pm on WRAL-2

  • Golf: WGC-Dell Match Play Championship

    Tomorrow at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NASCAR: Auto Club 400

    Tomorrow at 3:00 pm on FOX50

  • NASL: NCFC at San Francisco

    Saturday, Apr. 8 at 10:00 pm on WRAL-2

  • NASL: NCFC vs. Edmonton

    Saturday, Apr. 15 at 7:30 pm on WRAL-2

  • NASL: NCFC @ Miami

    Saturday, Apr. 22 at 7:30 pm on WRAL-2

  • CBB: UNC v. Kentucky

    Tomorrow at 5:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NASL: NCFC at San Francisco

    Saturday, Apr. 8 at 10:00 pm

  • NASL: NCFC vs. Edmonton

    Saturday, Apr. 15 at 7:30 pm

  • NASL: NCFC at Miami

    Saturday, Apr. 22 at 7:30 pm

NBA Scoreboard
Utah95Final
LA Clippers108
Washington1155:29
4th Qtr
Cleveland105
Toronto54Halftime
Dallas44
New York43Halftime
San Antonio61
Minnesota 7:00 PT8:00 MT9:00 CT10:00 ET2:00 GMT10:00 7:00 MST9:00 EST6:00 UAE (+1)03:0022:00 ET8:00 CTNaN:�
Preview
Portland 
NHL Scoreboard
Vancouver4Final
Minnesota2
Philadelphia0Final
Columbus1
Calgary24:45
OT
St. Louis2
Toronto22:20
3rd
Buffalo5
Ottawa1Final
Montreal3
Chicago0Final
Florida7
Carolina3Final
New Jersey1
Boston2Final
NY Islanders1
Arizona1Final
Washington4
San Jose15:21
2nd
Nashville4
Colorado 7:00 PT8:00 MT9:00 CT10:00 ET2:00 GMT10:00 7:00 MST9:00 EST6:00 UAE (+1)22:00 ETNaN:� BRT
Preview
Edmonton 
NY Rangers 7:30 PT8:30 MT9:30 CT10:30 ET2:30 GMT10:30 7:30 MST9:30 EST6:30 UAE (+1)22:30 ETNaN:� BRT
Preview
Los Angeles 
Minor League Baseball
International League
Rochester 11:05 PT12:05 MT1:05 CT2:05 ET7:05 GMT
Syracuse 
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 11:05 PT12:05 MT1:05 CT2:05 ET7:05 GMT
Buffalo 
Pawtucket 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Lehigh Valley 
Toledo 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Indianapolis 
Norfolk 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Charlotte 
Columbus 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Louisville 
Durham 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Gwinnett 
WGC Match Play (PGA)
Leader in BOLD/CAPS
MatchHScore
Rahm v Haas0AS
Johnson v Tanihara0AS
View Full Leaderboard
Puerto Rico Open (PGA)
PosNameScoreThru
1C. Stroud-1518
2tB. Lunde-1418
2tD. Points-1418
4tA. Johnston-1318
4tW. Kim-1318
4tJ. Randolph-1318
4tR. Campos-1318
4tT. Wilkinson-1318
4tB. DeChambeau-1318
10tJ. Poston-1218
View Full Leaderboard
 
Kia Classic (LPGA)
PosNameScoreThru
1M. Lee-1318
2M. Hur-1218
3tI. Chun-1018
3tC. Kerr-1018
5tB. Lincicome-918
5tA. Ernst-918
5tK. Icher-918
8tS. Ryu-818
8tG. Piller-818
8tS. Park-818
View Full Leaderboard
 
WGC Match Play (EURO)
Leader in BOLD/CAPS
MatchHScore
Rahm v Haas0AS
Johnson v Tanihara0AS
View Full Leaderboard
 
ATP Scoreboard
Saturday, Mar. 25
Miami Open (ATP/WTA)
Second Round
(12) N. Kyrgios     
D. Dzumhur     
(27) D. Ferrer2 3    
D. Schwartzma6 6    
(24) G. Muller77 77    
A. Seppi63 61    
(1) S. Wawrinka6 6    
H. Zeballos3 4    
(32) P. Lorenzi4 6 2   
A. Mannarino6 3 6   
(8) D. Goffin7 6    
D. King5 1    
(22) S. Querrey6 6    
T. Robredo2 3    
(10) T. Berdych6 6    
A. Rublev3 2    
(18) J. Isner7 77    
T. Bellucci5 65    
(31) F. Lopez3 6 3   
M. Jaziri6 4 6   
(4) R. Federer77 6    
F. Tiafoe62 3    
(16) A. Zverev6 6    
Y. Lu0 3    
(6) D. Thiem1 5    
B. Coric6 4    
(14) R. Bautista A6 4    
M. Kukushkin3 4    
(17) I. Karlovic5     
A. Kuznetsov6     
(29) J. Del Potro 
R. Haase 
 
WTA Scoreboard
Saturday, Mar. 25
Miami Open (ATP/WTA)
Third Round
(17) A. Pavlyuchen6 0 3   
B. Mattek-San4 6 6   
L. Safarova6 6    
A. Tomljanovi1 3    
(6) G. Muguruza4 6 6   
(30) S. Zhang6 2 2   
(15) B. Strycova6 6    
J. Cepelova2 4    
(5) A. Radwanska0 3    
(26) M. Lucic-Baro6 6    
(4) D. Cibulkova6 3    
K. Flipkens2 3    
(2) K. Pliskova7 0    
(27) Y. Putintseva5 0    
(12) C. Wozniacki 
S. Cirstea