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Duke 71, UNC 70

My game preview (or you can just scroll down).

Here's the box score.

Last night's game presented a good example of why adjusted field goal percentage is important to consider. Carolina shot 43.9% for the game (this is regular FG%) and Duke shot just 35.7%. That seems like a fairly significant difference, yet Duke still won the game. Why?

North Carolina was just 3-14 from behind the arc; Duke went 10-for-25. When we look at adjusted field goal percentage, which better illustrates the effects of this discrepancy, we get a different story:

UNC ADJ FG%: 46.5
Duke ADJ FG%: 44.6

That certainly makes it look a bit more even, doesn't it? The Heels shot 51% inside the arc compared to Duke's 32%, and the reverse was true from 3-point range: Duke shot 40%, the Heels shot 21%.

Add their impressive night from the line (21-22) to their three-point shooting and it's easier to see why Duke ended up with the win.

In my preview I mentioned that turnover rate was one of the few areas where Duke had an obvious advantage, and they managed to hold that advantage last night. Duke had 15 turnovers on 71 possessions for a TO rate of 21%; Carolina had 23 turnovers on 71 possessions for a TO rate of 32% (and that was well above their season average).

I was impressed with the way North Carolina rebounded the ball last night--Sean May in particular had a great night (23 pts and 18 boards). Shelden Williams averages a double-double, but he was pretty quiet (11 and 9).