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Duke Shoots Down Ducks, 98-71

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All in all, the Oregon game was a success, albeit one with a warning sign.

Duke thoroughly dominated, but they were, far more often than they should have been, careless with the ball.

opponent it could have been fatal.  If it happens against Michigan State, you can fully expect them to take advantage.

That's a question of intensity and focus, and you can reasonably expect it'll be addressed between now and December 1st.

Other than the turnovers, which at one point allowed Oregon to cut the lead from around 19 to 10, and to give them hope, the game was a big success, for the team overall and most of all for homeboy Kyle Singler.

Singler put on quite a show with 30 points, five boards, and shot as well as he ever has at Duke.  It must have been great for him to play in front of his family and friends and he certainly made the most of it.

He and Nolan Smith combined for 48 points (and 10 turnovers).

Mason Plumlee had 12 boards, seven points and four blocks.   He and brother Miles combined for 22 boards (Miles scored five).

Kyrie Irving again sliced through a defense and dazzled the crowd (by the way, we were stunned at how big a Duke crowd was there - it sounded like there were more Duke fans than Duck fans) with his speed and versatility.

Andre Dawkins in some ways had one of his best games. It wasn't that he was overwhelming, but that he was just so solid.  And that made his remarkable shot that much more effective (he finished with 14).  He's becoming an incredibly valuable part of this team.

What's really interesting to consider is how roles are developing.  Some were pretty clear from the beginning - Singler, Smith and Irving had certain expectations from the beginning.  But just about everyone else, being so young, had to stake out their own turf.

To an extent, it's been done.

Now you see a team with a rapidly improving big man in Mason Plumlee, a solid role player in Ryan Kelly (and one who promises to become more than that), another big man in Miles Plumlee who can at any point be dominant (by the way, in the last couple of games, his hands have been superb), and a pair of "backup" guards, although the term seems kind of silly, who are as explosive as any starting backcourt around.

Toss in two improving rookies in Tyler Thornton and Josh Hairston, and the potential is just huge.

As long as everyone continues to develop and to find roles, things will go well.  Where this team might face problems is in how it sees itself.

Yes, they can overwhelm a lot of teams, and can beat most with their B or possibly even C game.

We've all seen teams that had immense talent and didn't live up to it.  Michigan, UNLV, Georgetown, UNC in Michael Jordan's junior season, Duke '99 - we could go on and on.

This team has the potential to be really special, and that's not to say anything about March or April.  It's just that they've got so many weapons, so much talent, so much potential.

The danger is complacency.  If they attack and stay hungry, things will take care of themselves.  If not, if they make the same mistakes the other teams we mentioned made, even subconsciously, it'll cost them.

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