Joe Ovies

Talking Points: Terps clear Devils from Heels' path

Posted March 15, 2013
Updated March 16, 2013

1.Thanks for nothing, Maryland. It's not enough that y'all want to leave the conference, but you went ahead and screwed up a perfectly good Triangle-centric ACC Tournament semifinal Saturday.

There is a positive outlook for North Carolina outside of watching their rival lose. Duke was the biggest roadblock to the ACC Championship for the Heels, and the Terrapins removed it for them. Now UNC will see if it can play off of a potential letdown game for Maryland and play for the title on Sunday. 

2. So what happened to Duke in this rare ACC Tournament flameout? The defense was a mess.

Krzyzewski lit into the team early on and the message never really got through as Maryland continuously put the Devils out of position. Duke scrambled, couldn't stay in front of anyone and the Terrapins struck.

More specifically, Dez Wells did tons of damage in the first half.  The sophomore from Raleigh knocked down 7-of-9 from the field for 17 points, while the Terrapins collectively drained six shots from beyond the arc in the opening stanza. Wells cooled off a bit, but got to the line and still dropped 30 points on the Devils by the end of the night. 

The rest of Maryland kept pace and shot 61 percent in the second half. 

During a critical stretch midway through the second half, Maryland made 8-of-10 shots to stay out in front 59-52 with 7:39 to go. Duke missed seven 3-point attempts from that point on and couldn't bring the deficit down to less than five points. 

3. So about that whole "Duke is a totally different team with Ryan Kelly in the lineup" thing – go ahead and toss it out. 

Kelly was largely invisible for the Blue Devils. He failed to notch a 3-pointer in six attempts, looked incredibly slow on defense against Maryland's guard-heavy lineup and spent a chunk of time on the bench in the second half. 

"Look, [Kelly is] back, but he’s not in the shape that he would be normally," said Krzyzewski. "So we had to try to match them and we were playing catch up the whole time."

5. While Duke looked nothing like the team that dominated North Carolina last Saturday, the Tar Heels got back to the normalcy seen in the weeks leading up to the regular season finale. 

The Heels did a good job not playing into the Seminoles' desire to slug things out. North Carolina scored 27 points off of 18 FSU turnovers and only gave away seven possessions

6. P.J. Hairston hit two 3-pointers to get the ball rolling for North Carolina and hit two more in a 12-2 run that pushed the Tar Heels out to a 35-27 lead over Florida State at the half. He dropped another one early in the second half and finished his night early with a team-high 21 points. 

Hairston also spent the later parts of the game getting banged up. First he dealt with a stinger and then was taken to the locker room after apparently cutting his hand with just over 4 minutes left in the game. Hairston bled all over the court, causing two delays as officials initially cleaned it up before find some more blood a couple minutes later. 

Might as well go ahead and fire up #HandWebbingWatch2013.

7. When Hairston, James Michael McAdoo and Reggie Bullock all click for the Tar Heels, it's a fun group to watch. The trio went 20-of-31 from the field against the Seminoles before McAdoo fouled out and Hairston cut his hand.

Marcus Paige helped distribute with 9 of North Carolina's 18 assists.


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  • StunGunn Mar 16, 2013

    If Maryland plays anything like they did last night, they'll be tough to beat. Dez was amazing. At this point, I'm worried that Hairston will injure himself further.

  • slayerhil Mar 16, 2013

    I think most die-hard UNC fans wanted another shot at Duke. Does that mean I was pulling for them last night? Not on your life. ;) but not because I didn't want the Heels to play them again. I think the Heels would have beaten them this time around.

  • cal008 Mar 16, 2013

    View quoted thread

    Spot on. I wrote a comment on the same article by Gravely. They wrote off all of the lower seeds and essentially gave Duke a clear road to the final. While I realize that the focus on most of the local reporters and sites is on the Triangle (and really UNC and Duke) they like to profess they cover the "ACC everywhere."

  • VT1994Hokie Mar 16, 2013

    MD was much quicker than Duke last night. The 3 did't fall for Duke. I hope they shoot better in the Tourney.

  • Constitutional-Defender Mar 16, 2013

    Joe Ovaries, how embarrassing! This is a perfect example of poor journalism.

  • ugottabkiddinme Mar 16, 2013

    LMAO AT JOE....didn't i say when wral posted that lame article last week.."the heels will have to get thru DOOK to win the champ"...dook is not that great and CAN beat beat any given night...the fact of the matter is the Heels have a good a shot at winning it as anyone...geuss what genius, better than dook at this point!!...GO HEELS, makes me wonder how these guys call themselves sports gurus when they call dook a number 1 seed...they have been VERY beatable ALL year

  • jrt0856 Mar 16, 2013

    I was kinda looking forward to a rematch. Duke is not the powerhouse team u think they are. Oh by the way when Duke goes 3-25 from 3pt line it is an off night. When UNC shoots like terrible against Duke last SAT, it was great defense. We have figure out how the media in this spins things. Duke had a bad night because of MD and also Kelly is not as great u and Gold think he is, last night was the Kelly I have been watching for 4 yrs.

  • jrt0856 Mar 16, 2013

    Please, Kelly has been resting all year, and Curry is Curry either he hot or he's not. Besides he doesn't play defense, so he only plays half the time.

  • boolittlek Mar 16, 2013

    View quoted thread

    No kidding. The article reads like it's a given that UNC will win the title now that Duke's out. I'd love to see them win, but all three remaining teams are just as capable of winning it.

  • kornfan2448 Mar 16, 2013

    I don't know why I even read what Ovies puts out there.

    "Duke was the biggest roadblock to the ACC Championship for the Heels"

    Really? IF they can get by the Terps, they have to face either Miami, the #1 seed who handily beat Carolina twice; and State, that won the first game against the Heels and had no problem with a very good defensive UVA team. I'm hopeful, but not too enthused about UNC having to play either of those teams SHOULD they ein against MD. C'mon man!




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