What we learned from Duke’s big win over Kentucky


The 6-foot-7 freshman that plays some combination of point guard, small-ball four and bucket-getting slasher finished with 33 points - the record for a Duke freshman on his debut - on 13-for-26 shooting to go along six assists and four boards. The Blue Devils have won 19 consecutive openers. In arguably the most workmanlike performance of anyone on the court, the Aussie finished with nine points, three assists, two steals, zero turnovers, a game-high 11 rebounds, and at least another handful of heady hustle plays that don't show up on the stat sheet but tremendously helped his team put together a tremendous overall display.

Kentucky's sophomores were expected to give the Cats a big experience edge coming into this game, but PJ Washington, Quade Green and Nick Richards struggled throughout the night.

"I learned something about my team tonight, " Spartans coach Tom Izzo said. "He was the best player on our team tonight". "Jack had 11 rebounds and guarded [Tyler] Herro and played tough, just played really tough, so we're proud of the win".

The Cats were led by freshman wing Keldon Johnson with 23 points and Travis with 22. "He's a great player and he's a great challenge to defend". It was a strong start for the freshman.

Having a captain that can provide valuable minutes on both ends of the court will be crucial for the Blue Devils, as a lineup composed primarily of freshmen could run into some mental errors in truly hostile environments. Central at Rupp Arena.

Before we get to Dahntay's words.

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The nightcap was a head-to-head battle between the nation's top two programs in Duke and Kentucky, with expectations sky-high for a contest featuring multiple projected lottery picks and what seemed to be a relatively even battle from a competitive perspective.

"If that is who they are, they aren't going to lose many games, " Calipari said. The first game of the Champions Classic is No. 10 Michigan State versus No. 1 Kansas, but we'll focus on the second game - No. 4 Duke versus No. 2 Kentucky.

Although White may not fit the mold of a typical fifth man for a Duke lineup and doesn't have many minutes under his belt from previous seasons, don't be surprised if he spends a majority of his time on the floor.

The Blue Devils raced to a 32-11 lead early in the game.

The Blue Devils, however, may have issues with their depth going forward as they received very little from their non-freshmen and from their reserves until garbage time. No, not to the next game but to the next stage in their career.