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Here’s Some Duke Scrimmage Video To Get You Psyched For Basketball Season

Some very promising stuff here

NCAA Basketball: Duke Countdown to Craziness
Oct 15, 2021; Durham, NC, USA; Duke Blue Devils forward Paolo Banchero (5) dunks as his jersey is pulled by forward Theo John (12) during Duke Countdown to Craziness at Cameron Indoor Stadium. 
Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Here’s some video highlights from Duke’s Tuesday scrimmage. It’s hard to tell a lot from a few minutes of video and you don’t get to see a lot of every player but you can glean some things so, in the classic phrase...let’s go to the videotapeeeee!

  • The guy you see the most of here is probably Wendell Moore. He’s handling the ball a lot, and doing it well. We don’t know if Duke sees him as the backup point guard right now but pretty clearly he’s ready to step in if needed.
  • Paolo Banchero shows his versatility here. Someone described him as sort of a combination of Grant Hill and Danny Ferry, perhaps not knowing that as freshmen, both Blue Devil greats had to overcome a certain tentativeness. We don't know if that will be true for Banchero or not but we’re guessing when the coaches go over the video with him, they’ll push him to finish harder when he drives.
  • There’s a pretty nifty drive by Jaylen Blakes who’s being defended by 7-0 Mark Williams. Of course he plays against Wiliams on a regular basis and presumably knows his habits and tendencies. Still, it’s a pretty slick play by a freshman.
  • Joey Baker looks to be playing with a lot of confidence which is great to see.
  • You don’t have to watch Theo John long to realize that he’s a powerful guy who can impose himself on the game. Having him to beat on Williams on a regular basis can only help Duke’s young big man accelerate his development. He didn't have that last season but he sure does now.
  • Obviously we didn’t get to see AJ Griffin, who is currently rehabbing from whatever he did to his knee. Adding him in with Moore, Trevor Keels and Blakes will give Duke four guys who have the potential to really put pressure on other teams. He’ll be behind when he returns, but we may find that some other guys have seen their development ahead of schedule.