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Duke Wins A Tough, Physical Game Over Louisville

NCAA Basketball: Duke at Louisville
Jan 29, 2022; Louisville, Kentucky, USA; Duke Blue Devils forward A.J. Griffin (21) shoots against Louisville Cardinals guard Dre Davis (14) during the first half at KFC Yum! Center.
Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

In our preview, we said that we had no idea what to expect in Duke’s visit to Louisville. That was so on target because while Duke won 74-65, it was a wild game.

Duke went up by 16 early and was dominating inside but Mark Williams picked up two early fouls and left. Then Theo John got two as well and Duke’s inside advantage was severely eroded.

After a sloppy, poor shooting start, Louisville regrouped and had tied the game with less than a second left in the first half. Then AJ Griffin happened.

Griffin, who had a superb game for Duke, caught the ball while being well defended. What he did was kind of amazing and not many players can do it and we’re not sure we can explain it well. He shaped his body around the long, high arc needed and got the shot off and on target. It wasn’t a normal shot - he didn’t have time to gather himself.

After the half, Williams almost immediately picked up his third and the game got much more serious. Louisville kept pushing back and tied the game a few times but never took the lead.

When Williams came back in the game changed again.

Duke didn’t pull away immediately but shots were tougher for Louisville and Duke really hit the boards in this one. The Blue Devils had 21 offensive rebounds, which is pretty great considering how weak that was early on in the season. Banchero finished with 15 overall and six offensive while Williams had 11 total and five offensive.

The game turned on a spectacular stretch in the second half that featured two stunning plays at the Louisville rim and one block Williams got on his own where he caught the ball as well. Tuck in two threes by Griffin and some other fine plays and the game went from a tie to a 12 point Duke lead.

Griffin finished with 22 points while Banchero added 11 and Williams 14. Jeremy Roach had another one turnover game.

Jim will be along soon with his take.


Player Of The Game vs. Louisville

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    Wendell Moore
    (2 votes)
  • 86%
    AJ Griffin
    (530 votes)
  • 1%
    Paolo Banchero
    (11 votes)
  • 7%
    Mark Williams
    (48 votes)
  • 1%
    Jeremy Roach
    (9 votes)
  • 0%
    Joey Baker
    (4 votes)
  • 0%
    Theo John
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    Bates Jones
    (6 votes)
613 votes total Vote Now