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Slow Watching The First Half Of Duke-Appalachian State

There was some really interesting stuff in here.

Appalachian State v Duke
DURHAM, NC - DECEMBER 16: Theo John #12 of the Duke Blue Devils boxes out against RJ Duhart #4 of the Appalachian State Mountaineers in the second half at Cameron Indoor Stadium on December 16, 2021 in Durham, North Carolina.
Photo by Lance King/Getty Images

We’re a bit behind on this but the App State game is so interesting that we really wanted to go through it carefully.

  • Williams, again, steals the tip on the way up.
  • 19:38: Williams is long, lean and dangerous, but against smaller teams he’s at a disadvantage. Forrest is so ready to blow by him.
  • 19:21: Look how thoroughly the 6-5 Gregory anticipates the ball coming in to Williams. Almonacy scores and is just getting started.
  • 19:12: Roach sees Williams wide open in the lane - and passes over him to give Keels a corner three - which he drains. Pretty audacious play all around.
  • 18:51: Okay, what we do is download the game files from YouTube. We recommend it. Because once you have the file you can go back and forth pretty freely. Like here. Watch Almonacy cut an incredibly tight circle around Moore at the top of the key. And watch Roach realize what he’s doing and cut back to meet him back where they started. He finally attempts a three at 18:38 but had to really work for it.
  • 18:28: Banchero is going to be a great player but he’s going to really have to work on his power game. A 6-10, 250 lb. guy with guard skills is amazing. But he’s still 6-10 and 250 and needs to balance his outside game with more inside. Lewis is 6-8 and 215. No reason why Banchero shouldn’t punish him here.
  • 18:00: However, he does rebound confidently.
  • 17:56: The all-Paul backcourt strikes again as Roach spies Keels all by himself and hits him with a crosscourt pass for a sweet three.
  • 17:32: Roach gets some unfair criticism for whatever reason but he’s going to be fine. Watch his balance while he defends Almonacy here and hand never goes down. He scores but Roach was right there the whole way. Not many players could do that.
  • 17:14: It’s a bit awkward but look what Moore does on the drive here. Wow.
  • 16:42: Almonacy heating up!
  • 16:17: Moore gets points for extra effort on D here.
  • 16:05: Forrest is open as Gregory helps to illustrate. Another three for App State.
  • 15:42: Everyone except Williams is behind the three point line and ASU is taking no chances with Williams. Roach gets a nice three here.
  • 14:08: Griffin gets isolated with Gregory under the basket. A lot of young players would have fouled. He couldn’t stop him but at least he didn’t reach or do something stupid.Smart D by the rook.
  • 13:56: Joey Buckets has become…Joey Ferrari…’cause the dude now likes to drive.
  • 13:47: If you’re going to to foul…might as well get your money’s worth.
  • 13:11: Paolo Banchero is an extraordinary talent. But he clearly prefers the perimeter to the inside and…come on, he’s 6-10 and 250. This is not exactly a power move. Watch his legs.
  • 12:48: Keels for the steals. We’re pretty sure you heard it here first.
  • 12:39: Williams has a whole package of nice secondary skills like stealing the tip and tapping rebounds out. He does it here and then again on the other end. Pretty cool although ASU caught it on their end when he knocked it back outside.
  • 12:20: Keels was so determined to drive against Ohio State that he was totally ineffective about it. Since then he’s been much smarter. Not on this one though.
  • 12:14: Almonacy scores his ninth point here. He’s about to go on a serious rip.
  • 12:02: Griffin shows off his mid-range game.
  • 11:46: If you watch carefully here, Griffin is in a tough spot. He has to choose between guarding the lane or Almonacy in the corner. He hesitates just for a minute and closes out in time to bother Almonacy’s shot.
  • 11:37: Four out again with only Wiliams inside the three point line. Baker gets a corner three.
  • 10:50: This is how quickly Almonacy can get free. And Keels was working hard too.
  • 10:31: Minor but cool: Griffin fell over on all fours. The ball is already almost to him from a Keels pass. Look how quickly he gets up! Wow!
  • 10:15: Almonacy gets a mid-range shot to fall. High bank over Griffin, who is a half-foot taller. Impressive.
  • 9:45: Griffin hits from the corner. Note his balance and form, both really sound. And follow through.
  • 9:17: Almonacy hits another three. This will be his final points of the game but 17 points in the first 11:43? That’s Len Bias territory. Pretty amazing run. But it’s over. Also watch the pass on the replay by Forrest. That’s sweet.
  • 8:56: Roach has had just about enough of Almonacy. He’s right on him now. Watch how closely Roach sticks to him.
  • 8:27: Almonacy drives on Banchero with John behind him. Airball! And break time as he heads to the bench.
  • 7:50: We’re guessing Moore heard about this shot. Weak.
  • 7:37: Almonacy is back after the under eight TO. Keels has him now with Roach getting a break of his own.
  • 7:23: Almonacy gets an open shot and he’s so sure it’s in he heads downcourt while it’s in the air with three fingers up. But it’s a miss.
  • 7:07: We love John and we’re glad he’s on Duke’s team. He’s a good but not great player and a great fit in his role. Watch his quick jump hook here. Impressive. Right handed but he can go left.
  • 6:50: Almonacy is still hunting shots but he’s 6-0 and John and Keels are too imposing defensively. But like the rest of his team he screens very, very well and frees Eads up for a layup.
  • 6:21: We’ve pointed out stuff like this before because it’s funny: look how closely Scheyer’s body language mirrors that of Coach K. And not just the hands either. Watch closely.
  • 6:09: Almonacy probably should have hit this shot but in fairness, he had 6-6 and 6-9 right behind him. Lewis cleaned it up for him.
  • 5:54: John shows the benefits of playing for more than one year here. Basic stuff but well done. And Keels, who not long ago tried to ram everything in the lane, shows discretion and passes for an easier basket. All good.
  • 5:28: If you watch carefully here, Moore puts himself in a bad position defensively - then immediately corrects it. Really a nice move. Eads ultimately gets open on the other side after Griffin slides the wrong way. It’s okay: he’s a freshman and highly alert. He’ll do better.
  • 5:06: Four-out again but Banchero drives and scores. As a freshman, Danny Ferry had a similar issue where he would balk when defended on a drive. He got over it. Banchero will too. Someday soon we will see him attack the basket like a savage beast of prey! That day is not today.
  • 4:46: Keels reaches over. If he had gotten one more step over he might not have been called for it.
  • 4:44: After some heavy pressure on the inbounds, Almonacy throws it out top and Banchero picks it off and is off and running! Unfortunately he misses the chippy, making the whole play an exercise in respiratory futility.
  • 4:28: Lewis gets Williams off his feet and it’s hard to block a shot on your way down.
  • 4:20: Banchero sees Williams open and makes the smart pass. Lewis is still tormenting the big guy though and knocks it loose. Williams moved away from the ball instead of towards it.
  • 4:13: Almonacy kind of screws the pooch here. Dumb idea ends in a turnover. Watch the replay of Banchero’s miffed layup. Remember what we said about Scheyer mimicking Coach K’s body language? Well here it’s Scheyer, Smith and Jefferson. They ALL lean back at the same time, punctuated by K smacking Scheyer in frustration. Well not really smacking - it wasn’t a smack, more commiseration. But he does snarl and express frustration over Banchero’s blowing it. He then folds his arms and, for the briefest second, looks like Abraham Lincoln before he grew the beard. Seriously, this whole thing is so cool. And actually, Scheyer kind of pokes Krzyzewski first. It’s like this great choreography.
  • 3:30: Roach back on Almonacy. He gets by him and tries to shoot over Banchero which is not easy. On the break, Keels tosses it inside to Williams who gets an easy dunk when Forrest goes for the steal.
  • 3:09: If you get near Williams in this sort of situation, you’re eating leather.
  • 3:05: Moore shows Banchero how do a a fast break proper!
  • 2:28: At times like this, Banchero is simply dazzling.
  • 1:31: Corey Alexander was just praising his follow through but here Banchero has none as he seemingly rushes to get the shot off over Lewis. We talked earlier about Williams’s interesting bundle of skills and one is that he frequently pops the ball loose from opponents. Like here. Which pays off in a layup for Keels.
  • 1:02: Inexplicably, Forrest throws the ball right to Williams. By this point, Almonacy is basically a spectator.
  • 54.4: Look, Banchero can get away with this here because he’s 6-10 and 250 and next to the basket. BUT one slight turn and he could have jackhammered this thing to Shanghai. Guard skills are great but at times he needs to remember his size and power - and to use it.
  • 35.8: If you lose track of your man you’re in trouble. And Banchero was in trouble here.
  • 8.2: Highly unusual pass for a 6-10 player. It whips around to Roach who shoots an airball with 2 seconds on the shot clock. Banchero gets it back up quickly - smart move - but the horn goes off despite it hitting the rim. Williams flushes it. After discussion, it counts.