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Slow Watching The First Half Of Duke-Ohio State

Duke won the first half but by halftime it was clear Ohio State was in the better position.

Duke v Ohio State
COLUMBUS, OHIO - NOVEMBER 30: Paolo Banchero #5 of the Duke Blue Devils reacts to a foul during the first half of a game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Value City Arena on November 30, 2021 in Columbus, Ohio.
Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images
  • 20:00: Mark Williams is the best, bar none, we’ve ever seen at getting to the tip early. It’s a weird talent but he’s got it in droves.
  • 19:39: Keels darts into the lane but opts for a jumper. Good to mix things up. After the ball flies around a bit Roach draws a foul, also in the lane. Another talent Williams has: tipping rebounds out to the right place/guy. John does this too. We sense Scheyer behind this.
  • 19:24: Keels shoots another three but misses. Our belief: whenever Duke starts a game doing the same thing more than once, it’s a point of emphasis in practice/game prep.
  • 19:04: We bet Liddell heard about this shot. Weak.
  • 18:56: Moore drives, scores and draws the foul - but Duke tries three times to shoot a three before he scores.
  • 18:17: OSU turnover but it’s more on the passer. Stupid place to put the ball.
  • 18:04: Banchero bounces the ball off his leg when he goes between them. Then he turns it over after a pass from Williams. Nobody touched it either time.
  • 17:43: Key learns he can muscle Williams.
  • 17:21: Roach drives left-handed and scores. Roach is learning he can do damage in the lane. More please.
  • 16:55: Keels gets lost on this pick. Communication? First of many for Duke in this game.
  • 16:49: Moore overpasses Williams on the break. Could’ve been an easy basket or at least put Duke in a good position to get one.
  • 16:18: At some point, Roach (and Keels) will start hitting these. And again, it appears that taking threes is a priority.
  • 16:04: Key muscles Williams again for two.
  • 15:45: Roach drives around a Williams pick. Duke does not do picks/screens anywhere near as well as Ohio State does. Misses on the drive.
  • 15:20: Key is using his lower center of gravity to push Williams back but this time Williams gets the block anyway.
  • 15:14: Roach shoots the three and nails it.
  • 14:57: Keels tips the ball out of bounds.
  • 14:44: John in for Williams and he pressures Liddell into a clunky three. But after the shot, he hits him on the elbow and knocks him back 3-4 feet.
  • 14:14: Watch Roach here. He pressures the ball handler then gets to the shooter and pressures him too, getting a finger on the shot. Pretty great. But he loses contact with Wheeler on the inbounds and he hits this three.
  • 13:43: Banchero is normally a good ball handler but he’s weak against OSU.
  • 13:31: Moore is usually smart about going up strong…not here. Way off balance. Maybe Key spooked him.
  • 13:23: Buckeyes whip the ball around and the court is wide open. Great ball movement.
  • 13:08: Liddell muscles John in the post and draws a foul.
  • 12:58: It’s already clear that this is not going to be Banchero’s night…Baker bails him out and scores on the drive.
  • 12:39: This time the pick on Keels doesn’t work.
  • 12:27: Keels cuts for a layup and the dribble move here makes it possible. Nice.
  • 12:18: This is almost funny: Moore has his back turned and turns back just in time to pick off a long inbounds. Keels forced the shot though.
  • 11:59: Moore reaches behind to tip the ball loose. Duke has had a lot of success with this. We sense Scheyer again. Moore scores on the break.
  • 11:48: Moore again, knocks the ball loose on the inbounds. Duke pressure ratcheting up.
  • 11:28: Liddell muscles one in over John.
  • 11:10: John on the nice righty jump hook.
  • 10:53: Baker steps in to pick off the pass on the perimeter.
  • 10:42: John with another nice jump hook as Duke takes the lead.
  • 10:23: We’ll give him points for nerves, but Young is taking on a 7-0 shot blocker. Low odds of success in the lane. And unlike Key and Liddell he has no muscle to back it up.
  • 10:12: Banchero tries in the lane but nope. For whatever reason, he’s off his feed. Almost 25 percent in and he still hasn’t scored.
  • 9:58: And then this: he gets the board, leads the break and scores on a ridiculous scoop shot - and draws a foul on Liddell. Watch for the handy illustration from John on the bench. Then check out the replay. As they say: you can’t teach this. No one could ever teach this. You only learn it from thousands of hours in the gym, many of them alone. Then he converts for the three point play.
  • 9:42: Keel and Moore are closing like sharks on Wheeler. Roach, again, covers an impressive distance to pick up Branham. The guy really gets across the court fast. Unfortunately gets the foul. Still: great pressure all around.
  • 9:19: We’re not referees and it’s a tough job. But why is Young not called for a foul here but Moore is subsequently after the inbounds? Hands seem to be a major focus. Bodies? Not so much. Moore’s second.
  • 9:10: Williams tries to block Branham with his right arm. Might’ve gotten it with his left.
  • 8:56: Keels takes it right to Key in the lane. This is an exception to general game trends. And a three point play. 23-17 Duke.
  • 8:41: Baker’s areas of improvement: defense and rebounding. He’s become a much more valuable tool.
  • 8:27: Ohio State can muscle Duke. It’s already clear. But Duke can pressure Ohio State. Ahrens makes a superb steal and saves the ball back in…but Banchero pounces, steals it back from the much smaller Branham and gets a layup - and draws a foul on Branham.
  • 8:08: Williams fouls trying to guard Key inside. Williams is visibly frustrated.
  • 8:03: Right back to Key passes out and then back for a dunk. Williams cannot stop it.
  • 7:34: Now it’s Williams for a frustration dunk!
  • Next play, clock obscured: Liddell tries to drive on Keels who strips him. Coast-to-coast miss.
  • 6:42: This is subtle but amazing: watch how fast Griffin switches gears to go for the steal attempt. Wow! Key ultimately scores but Duke’s pressure ratchets up. More.
  • 5:55: Banchero fouls on a three point attempt.
  • 5:41: Moore cuts in the middle but puts up a weak, off balance shot. Duke leads but Ohio State’s physical play is making life difficult.
  • 5:30: Roach bounces the ball off of Ahren’s knee but OSU keeps possession.
  • 5:19: Wheeler is guarded by Moore and he coughs it up with minimal pressure. Quick question: which Big Ten team has the best pressure defense?
  • 4:58: You know..that’s a seriously deep three by Liddell.
  • 4:46: John back for another jump hook but misses. But he knocks the rebound to Banchero who hits Moore for an open three in the corner. Again, you can’t teach that pass. It was superb.
  • 4:17: This is Banchero when he’s comfortable. And OSU didn’t let him get very comfortable.
  • 3:58: Unnecessary foul by Banchero here. Given the physical game OSU plays, Duke was already in serious foul trouble.
  • 3:48: Moore’s fake here is very quick but the key to his successful drive.
  • 3:07: You know that last foul by Banchero? Now it’s expensive as he gets #3. All in the last 5:55 of the half. Fatal.
  • 2:28: We like everything Keels did here except how long he stood still. Acceptable miss.
  • 2:12: Reach-in on Williams at the three point line. Why? That’s three foolish fouls by Duke big men in the last 1:46. And basically, that’s game. Duke closes the half out, but from here it’s just attrition.
  • 1:57: The inside game benched, other than John, Roach tries a three.
  • 1:25: Moore makes a great drive here but shoots righty on the left side.
  • 1:00: Moore picks up the OSU miss and heads out! Really nice pass to Roach who takes it in left-handed. He’s like the only guy who does this.
  • 33.2: Liddell tries to pass to Key who has an advantage inside but John pops it loose. Keels passes to Roach - great pass btw - who passes back to Baker for an easy open three. Suddenly Duke is up 43-29, with Banchero and Williams on the bench.
  • 0.1: People thought this timeout was gratuitous but a basket here would have really helped. Ultimately it didn’t matter. Ohio State had Duke where it wanted it and the second half would see them grind the Blue Devils down by the end.