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Duke 77, NC State 53: Wolfpack gets blown out of the ACC tournament

Evan Pike-USA TODAY Sports

The last time these teams met, Duke had its worst shooting night of the season. That ... did not happen again. On Thursday night, the game was over nearly as soon as it started. The Blue Devils came out hitting, the Wolfpack was completely out of sync, and as a result NC State got buried.

Cat Barber and Trevor Lacey were limited to a combined four points, and Barber didn't hit a shot from the field before leaving the game with an apparent head injury. Barber, who has a history of concussions, may have suffered another when he ran into a screen he never knew was there.

Duke's first half, meanwhile, was near perfection. At one point--well into the half, mind you--the Blue Devils were averaging nearly two points per possession. They finished the period at a mere 1.75. That's insanity. Few teams average more than 1.2 points per possession over the course of a season. There are occasional games where teams will score 1.5 or so. Hitting 1.75 PPP for a half of a game is just astounding. On the night, the Blue Devils averaged 1.4 PPP.

And we got to see it. Hooray for all of us. [sobbing]

What else is there to say about this game? We've seen the Pack play with lackluster intensity against teams that are on their A-game, and tonight was another chapter in that book of nightmares. It stinks to go out this way, but at least it can't really hurt when your team is blown out from the tip-off. Duke was fantastic. Ain't much I can do but give the Devils a tip o' the cap and shift my focus to Selection Sunday.