Maybe Mike Krzyzewski knew. Maybe he understood how good Shane Battier would become. Maybe he knew how good Jason Williams would be. But did anyone understand how good they would be together?
It’s hard to imagine.
Battier came to Duke expected to be good and left as a tremendous offensive player and a brilliant - that’s the closest word for how good he was but it’s not enough - defender. His performance against Arizona in the 2001 championship was the ultimate in leadership and. effort. The man blocked a shot with his fingernail. He was not going to yield to anyone.
And Williams was unbelievable. Relatively squat and powerful, he did things that no Duke player had done before - or since.
In the 2000 game against UNC in Cameron, the pair led Duke on an incredible run. Battier starts it with a block which Williams turns into a layup. The rest? Well, the lead goes from 16-12 with 9:28 in the first half to 22-12 - in :28 seconds.