Published: Mon, February 11, 2019
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Duke Blue Devils vs. Virginia Cavaliers, 2/9/19 Predictions & Odds

Duke Blue Devils vs. Virginia Cavaliers, 2/9/19 Predictions & Odds

R.J. Barrett is leading the team with 23 points and 7.2 rebounds per game while Zion Williamson is adding 22 points and 9.4 rebounds per game. But this one wasn't a dunk.

LeBron James and Rajon Rondo spent their off day watching college basketball as they traveled to Charlottesville, Va., to watch No. 2 Duke defeat No. 3 Virginia, 81-71. Kyle Guy and Ty Jerome scored 16 points apiece for Virginia, who couldn't avenge their 72-70 loss to the Blue Devils on January 19.

RJ Barrett's six 3-pointers and five more from Reddish on Saturday night at Virginia helped erase that game plan. He didn't score in the second half until the aforementioned stickback with 4:03 remaining, and that was only his second shot of the half.

Bennett thought his team might have over-adjusted by focusing too much on trying to close off the inside, but his counterpart, Duke's Mike Krzyzewski, thought it was at least as much a case of his own players recognizing the strategy change. "That little bit of room - they took advantage of it without any kind of coaching".

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Duke has recorded a steal on 13.9 percent of opponents' possessions - best percentage in the NCAA.

Duke played that game without Jones, who sat with a shoulder injury.

The rematch between teams with national championship aspirations came three weeks after the Blue Devils held off Virginia at Cameron Indoor Stadium for a 72-70 win, the most points the Cavaliers had allowed this season until Saturday. He also leads the ACC in assists (5.5) and assist-to-turnover ratio (4.8).

The No. 3 Cavaliers (20-2, 8-2 ACC) were the last team against which anyone would figure to shake a 3-point funk. The junior was unavailable for the February 2 game against Miami, the first time he has sat out in his career - a span of 89 games. "We knew nobody else was gonna win the game for us, so we just tried to keep our composure and play the rest of the 20 minutes". "I practiced off and on all week, and I practiced pretty much the whole time on Friday, and I felt all right". The lead was 31-17 before two 3-pointers by Guy, one by Jerome and another by Kihei Clark, which fueled an 18-8 run for Virginia that closed the gap to 39-35 at the half. The likes of De'Andre Hunter and Kyle Guy will have to step up and make something happen. Both these teams were terrible from 3-point range the first time around. "But we did jam the lane, so we got that going for us".

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