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Some Thoughts On What To Expect From Duke In Toronto

Even without Jones and Reddish, the Blue Devils should be in good shape, but point guard is going to be thin.

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NCAA Basketball: Duke at UNLV
Dec 10, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Duke Blue Devils forward Jack White (41) directs a teammate during the fourth quarter of a game against the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels at T-Mobile Arena. Duke won the game 94-45.
Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Duke’s 2018-19 basketball team will debut 725 miles from Cameron Wednesday without Tre Jones and Cam Reddish, both of whom are injured.

That makes things a bit interesting. It would be easier to play without Reddish than Jones, who is by far the team’s best point guard. However, Reddish could also help at point so that’s going to hurt too.

As of now, we would expect Marques Bolden, Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett, Alex O’ Connell and probably Jordan Goldwire to start. We could also see starting Javin DeLaurier and working Williamson in off the bench.

That’s just a guess though. It’s entirely possible that Duke could opt to start either O’ Connell or Barrett at point and the basic fact is that you’ll need a backup for whoever starts.

And it wouldn’t surprise us at all if Jack White gets a lot more time than people expect.

Whatever happens, there are going to be adjustments for a lot of guys. Everyone (including us) has talked a lot this summer about Williamson, Barrett and Reddish and, to a lesser extent, Joey Baker. Baker may well redshirt this year but he’s fully eligible to play on this trip, which wouldn’t count against a redshirt anyway, so we’ll get to see him and probably more than we would have with Barrett and Jones playing.

We haven’t been able to find much about Ryerson yet so we can’t really talk about them.

However, Duke has a lot going for it. You could start with four returnees and bring Williamson off the bench and still be in great shape overall.

Our biggest concern is just at the point. However, Goldwire has spent a year learning the system and will most likely be fine. If Duke has trouble holding on to the ball though, things might get tricky.

Even if that happens, we would expect Duke to have some other advantages like athleticism and rebounding but it’s really hard to know much about this game now since we know so little about Ryerson.

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