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  • shwineka 11:54 pm on December 2, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Buffalo Billiards, , , , , Dean Smith Center, , , , , Larry Drew, , , , , , , , , , , wear twins   

    Deja Vu: UNC Handles Michigan State 

    UNC 89, MSU 82

    Box Score

    It’s becoming a common thing. UNC plays Michigan State. UNC wins.

    The Heels have taken their last five meetings with the Spartans, and these aren’t just in the Big 10-ACC Challenge games. I recall an April day in 2005. A hot Spartan team was in the Final Four making some noise and ready to take down the No. 1-seeded Tar Heels. Or wait was that 2009?

    Anyway, for all the things that Tom Izzo does well, he can’t seem to figure out his Carolina conundrum. And honestly, who didn’t think Tuesday was going to be his night?

    A completely different UNC team showed up in the Smith Center than I’ve seen this year. The froshs and sophs played like upperclassmen right from the tip-off, with UNC jumping out to an early lead. It had to feel sickening for MSU fans, a horrible case of deja vu. Us DC-based Rafters bloggers sat with a decent contingent of UNC fans at Buffalo Billiards. A great idea emerged. Anyone not privileged enough to live in Chapel Hill, like our esteemed colleague Benn, should tweet us to meet up in the DC area for game viewings. We like to go out. If we go out anyway, we’ll make sure to say where we’re going.

    Hey, we might even put your picture on the internets.

    Before I get all hot and bothered thinking about tweet ups:

    Takeaways:

    • The recruiting class of 2008 came out of its shell. LD and Easy Ed both notched career highs in points (18 and 22 respectively). LD hit some clutch shots and had a 2-to-1 assist to turnover ratio in 27 minutes. Davis was his normal smooth self. You must watch this guy on Ustream sometime. Just follow him on twitter and he’ll notify when he’s getting on. If you want to know why we love him so much that will tell you everything.
    • If there’s only 5 seconds left in a half, who gets the rock? Answer: Dexter Strickland. Strickland hit his second buzzer beater of the year at the end of the first half, sinking a trey.
    • Will Graves is a starter, but he logs bench minutes. He’s getting about the same run time as Strickland, John Henson and Tyler Zeller. Gut tells me that once Roy is more comfortable with Henson or Strickland they’ll get the start. (And after last night I gotta be leaning towards Strickland)
    • Back to Dex. Strickland had zero turnovers while logging some significant minutes at point. And as Luke Winn reminds us, he is a converted shooting guard. Got to be happy with that.
    • Are the Wears twins? …………or clones? Travis – 2 pts, 3 rebs in 6 minutes; David – 2 pts, 2 rebs in 7 minutes

    Superlatives

    • Players of the Game: Larry Drew and Ed Davis –  see above
    • Lookin’ Fierce Award: Roy Williams
    • John Henson, if there was an award for throwing the ball between your legs to save it from going out, we’d give it to you. I don’t think even the Rafters has an award for that.
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    • Zach Evans 12:46 pm on December 3, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      With all due respect to Henson, maybe the award should be the “Don’t Save the Ball Underneath the Other Basket” Award. As impressive as it looked, it did lead to an easy MSU basket.

      I guess I’m just never satisfied.

  • shwineka 5:06 pm on November 24, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , Gardner-Webb, Grayson Flittner, , , , , Runnin' Bulldogs, Shane Battier, , , , , , , wear twins   

    Wrap-Up: UNC Routs Gardner Webb 93-72 

    (Photo by Robert Willett of the N&O)

    UNC 93, Gardner-Webb 72

    Box Score

    The story of this game is short and sweet.

    Gardner Webb was just outsized and out-athlete-ed. Yes, it’s a word. Anyways UNC’s perimeter defense was again shaky, it’s just GW didn’t have the guards Syracuse did. That didn’t stop Runnin’ Bulldogs guard Grayson Flittner from tying the record for most 3-pointers in a game in the Dean Dome (9). The kid could not miss. He finished with 32 points.

    Takeaways from the game:

    • It seems like Tyler Zeller has taken a charge every single game. It will be shorting him a few games worth, but starting now we’ll try to keep track of how many games he does this. So beginning yesterday, he’s 1 for 1.
    • Dexter Strickland has shown flashes of greatness. His development will determine a lot in regards to how far Carolina goes this year. If he steps up big, look out.
    • When both the Wear twins are on the floor at the same time, UNC plays smart. You can tell these kids have played together their entire lives. Did anyone else catch how the only resemblance of a comeback in the Syracuse game came mostly at the hands of the Wears? Wish they were a bit more athletic, but you can’t have everything, they’ll get there.

    Superlatives:

    • The “If you call me Shane Battier, I’ll kick your ass” Award: Tyler Zeller
    • Best Block: Once again to John Henson for his block-into-leap-frog-between-the-legs-bounce-pass-to-save-it-from-going-out play. It’s at the 1:23 mark of the video, though you can’t see the best part, which is the out-of-bounds save. That’s two wins in this category for Mr. Henson.
    • Stat Stuffer (aka the Danny Green Award): Marcus Ginyard – 8 pts, 5 rebs, 6 asts, 3 stls
    • Most Minutes without a Turnover Award (sadly a very important one): Tyler Zeller, 15 min played

     

     
    • lulu 1:29 pm on November 27, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      will be looking forward to the “superlatives” “OVER-THE-TOP-CATEGORIES-THAT- SHOULD -NOT BE-MISSED.”

  • shwineka 12:41 am on November 13, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , wear twins,   

    If Harrison Barnes Goes to UNC…. 

    hbarnes02_0

    Now — while there’s still hours before we know where he’s headed — it’s still reasonable to think about what it would be like if Harrison Barnes comes to UNC.

    Oh, how glorious.

    Starting Line-up assuming Ed Davis leaves for the NBA

    PG – Larry Drew II
    SG – Dexter Strickland
    SF – Harrison Barnes
    PF – John Henson
    C – Tyler Zeller

    Now, realizing that Henson could be gone as well. That would likely put one of the Wear twins in the power forward position. Regardless, Carolina would play big, and play fast. Add to that the fact that UNC would  have blue chippers Kendall Marshall as a backup point guard, and Reggie Bullock at small forward shooting guard coming in as freshmen, and you’ve got a lot of talent. Marshall is high-profile enough that he might challenge for a starting spot. Plus Will Graves, Leslie McDonald and Justin Watts would be getting minutes and that’s a 12-man rotation. Talk about deep. This team would no doubt challenge for a national championship.

    And after Tyler Hansbrough stayed for four years, it can’t be helped to ask: What if Ed Davis stays?

    Think about that, Harrison. Think about it.

     
  • shwineka 4:57 pm on November 12, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , wear twins   

    Duke Forward Mason Plumlee Injured 

    Now, I don’t wish injury upon anyone. But I also don’t wish success upon Duke.

    And success is going to be tough at the beginning of the season without star freshman Mason Plumlee, who fractured his wrist in practice Wednesday.

    This is going to really hurt the Devils, who were probably going to have Plumlee and his brother, Miles, in the starting five. As his injury doesn’t require surgery, he’ll probably be back this season. Lucky for us that’s precious development time for a freshmen (see Tyler Zeller last year).

    Hopefully he’ll be back just in time for the showdown with the Wear twins that I’m so eagerly anticipating.

     
  • shwineka 12:15 pm on November 2, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Devin Booker, , , , , , , , , , , , wear twins   

    Brotherly Love: Wears, Plumlees and Bookers All in ACC This Year 

    As The Rafters mentioned before, wouldn’t it be awesome for the Wear twins and Plumlee brothers to become big rivals over the next three years or so?

    Well, turns out there is ANOTHER pair of brothers this year in the ACC. Clemson standout Trevor Booker’s younger bro, Devin, will play for the Tigers this season. This potential rivalry could only last one season at most because Trevor is a senior, but it could make for some interesting games this year. The article linked above doesn’t really go into the Wear’s on-court demeanor with each other, but says that the Plumlees at Duke “take each other to another level.” At least according to John Scheyer.

    The writer mentions what might have been a forgone conclusion by some, that the Wears won’t see much floor time this season with the glut in the frontcourt. But Roy Williams has in the past played a lot of players to accommodate his roster. If they only come on once this season, I hope it’s against the brothers Plumlee or Booker.

     
  • shwineka 4:36 pm on October 29, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , elliot williams, john, , Kyrie Irving, , , , , , scheyer, , , , , , wear twins   

    UNC, Duke Tie for preseason No. 1 ACC ranking; Duke inks PG 

     

    Late with posting both of these – apologies – but it’s only fitting that in the 41-year history of preseason ACC rankings, UNC and Duke would be the first to tie for the top spot. What’s disturbing is that Duke garnered more first place votes, yet tied when it came down to total points. I know they just signed Kyrie Irving and all, but c’mon, he’s not playing this year.

    kyrie-irving2-298x480

    Actually what’s striking to me is that both of these teams are at the top with huge expectations of their current freshmen. Granted UNC has arguably the best recruiting class in the country (some weird folks might argue Kentucky), they has very little experience. Duke has a 17-year-old point guard who should be good, and Mason Plumlee, the supposedly more talented Plumlee brother.

    Side thought: Wouldn’t it be great if the Wears vs. the Plumlees became a big rivalry over the next three years?

    Anyway, both teams will be shorthanded in the backcourt. It’s my suspicion that Andre Dawkins (the young PG) will get a lot of time at the position, even after John Scheyer ended up playing the spot for them a lot last year. That puts a freshman PG in the mix for Duke, never a good thing in the ACC. Usually, if a PG does relatively well as a freshmen in this league, then we all knew about him well before he sets foot on the court. This is not exactly true in this case, considering Dawkins rushed to graduate early after Elliot Williams transferred. Man. How much of a factor do you think Coach K was in getting that to happen?

    The Heels will have sophomore Larry Drew II, who saw some regular, though limited, minutes backing up Ty Lawson, and freshman Dexter Strickland. Strickland is ranked higher than Dawkins as far as I know, and is actually a more natural two guard.

    Between Dawkins and Strickland, it’s probably a toss-up. I don’t like putting tons of merit into unproven freshmen, so let’s just say they cancel each other out. After that we have a Drew II vs. Scheyer match-up at point. I might actually give the nod to Scheyer, who started more games and generally played a bigger role as a PG, though I think Drew II has more upside.

    Regardless, there are a lot of question marks on the top two preseason teams in the ACC. Are these indicators it might be a down year for the league? Tough to tell. After a few months it will be more evident which conferences are the best. The Big 10 looks strangely good this year, but I digress. The best conference argument must be later by necessity. Now’s time to get ready for Thursday night football.

     

    Go Heels!

     
  • shwineka 5:41 pm on October 21, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , frontcourt, , , , , , , , , wear twins   

    Heels get nod as pre-season top frontcourt 

    Sports Illustrated’s Luke Winn has a ranking of the top frontcourts in the country for ’09-’10 and guess who’s sittin’ pretty at the top?……

    Did you think I would blog it if it were another team? Well, I guess I probably would with some sort of angle, but anyway he has the Heels as No. 1. The short write-up mentions that Ed Davis might have a break-out year — Um, affirmative. This will happen — but it points out something I did not know, which is that Davis had higher offensive AND defensive rebounding percentages than Hansbrough last year. When Davis came off the bench, we all knew he was going to grab boards like an effin’ carpenter, but that stat, I must say, is nice.

    ncb_a_davis_400

    He also gives a nod to Deon Thompson and freshman John Henson. What he didn’t have room for in the piece – I told you it was short – was to talk about Tyler Zeller and the Wear twins. I’m thinking he went with the sheer depth of our frontcourt as reasoning for the No. 1 ranking. Experience-wise, we’re not close. Thompson is seasoned, and Davis played about 18 minutes a game last year, but Zeller was out for most of the season with a wrist injury and the other three are freshmen. That said, if everyone shows up like they should, I don’t think we’ll have a problem defending this early praise.

     
  • hiphopobserver 6:51 pm on October 20, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , wear twins,   

    Daily Tar Heel: UNC Basketball Preview 2009-2010 “Out of the Shadows” 

    (Left to Right) Dexter Strickland, David Wear, John Henson, Travis Wear, Leslie McDonald

    Another Daily Tar Heel project that deserves a lot more attention than just this post, the annual basketball preview was released today. Below is a link to a nice browse-able version of the print edition. Good features on Tyler Zeller, Will Graves and the five freshmen.

    Check out Out of the Shadows

     
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