Thursday, February 19, 2015

Carolina 90 - Duke 92; Duke Honors Dean At Cameron

   The real highlight of the game was this. Still more props to Duke for the way they've responded to Dean's death.
  As for the game...well...there were some good things, some good play by both teams, but the Heels still just can't seem to get it all together. Not all at once, anyway. We had like 6 points from our starting back court, and Paige was a non-factor. The prevailing theory is that his plantar fasciitis is really bothering him. I've had that stuff, and it's miserable. I couldn't run for like two years because of it. At any rate, as everyone knows, this year's Marcus Paige is a pale shadow of last year's Marcus Paige... All year the Heels have either started flat and built a big deficit or collapsed at the end. This game they did both, starting ten points down and then collapsing spectacularly in the final 2:30, up by 10. I expected it to happen, because that's just how we roll this year...but hoped that it wouldn't.
 The front court played well, but was hampered by the...well...somewhat puzzling officiating. Brice, Kennedy and Isaiah had 5, 4 and 3 fouls...Okafor had 1 for the game, including OT. Then there was the blatant Winslow foul at the end of regulation that allowed Jones to score...impossible to miss, it seemed...right out in front of God and call. When I saw the foul, I thought that was game us. If that foul is called, Heels win. (Doug Gottleib tweeted "the game goes to overtime because of the worst no-call of the season.") And I think that's a plausible assessment. On top of that Winslow clotheslined Paige on the rebound at the end of OT...if that one is called, we likely tie. But sadly, again, no call.
   Complaining about the refs is bad form. Reffing is hard, and it's an approximate business. You've got to understand that going in. But ever since that game in the DES in 2012 when four bad calls in two minutes set up a winning shot by Austin Rivers, the dookiest dookie of all time, I've been rubbed particularly the wrong way by this sort of thing, and I do wonder whether K's constant snarling at the officials works. Especially when the final foul count for the game was Heels 26, Duke 16--and that includes the stretch at the end of regulation when Duke was fouling intentionally. Bad calls go both ways...and one expects a certain amount of home cookin' in the ACC...but daggum it, it daggum really seemed to hit us daggum hard last night...
   But, again--the game's a game and it's an inconsequential thing sub specie aeternitatis. Good on Duke for getting the important stuff right last night.


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