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NC State vs. Wake Forest part II: Defense not in forecast for Wolfpack, Deacs

The first matchup between these teams featured a lot of scoring and not many stops.

NCAA Basketball: Wake Forest at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

In the first meeting between NC State and Wake Forest this season, the game went exactly as one might expect from a pair of teams with above-average offenses and below-average defenses: there were a lot of points. We are likely to see a similar game in the rematch Saturday. To the bullet points!

First meeting: Wake 93, State 88 [81 possessions]

— John Collins dominated the paint for Wake, scoring 21 on 8-11 shooting while also grabbing 11 rebounds.— Neither team shot well from three: Wake was 6-22, State was 6-26; those were aberrant performances for both teams.
— Neither rebounding nor turnovers were difference-makers in this game, though the Deacs had slight edges in both cases.
— Wake won this game at the free throw line, hitting 29 of 33 attempts. NC State, meanwhile, was only 16-27 from the line.
— Abdul-Malik Abu had a standout game for the Pack, scoring 20 on 9-14 shooting. Dennis Smith finished with 13 assists.
— Collectively, the Pack made 71% of its twos (27-38) and somehow still lost.

Saturday’s meeting

— The Pomeroy Predictor has Wake winning 91-81; again, not much defense is anticipated.
— Somewhat strangely, given Collins’ presence, the Deacs are making only 48.6% of their twos in ACC play, which ranks 12th in the conference. They’re making a successful living on three-point shooting, avoiding turnovers, and drawing fouls.
— NC State’s defense is doing nothing well in league play—I’m sure that comes as a shock—and at this point is more performance art than dumpster fire, as far as I’m concerned.
— Nothing matters, especially not any of this. We are all eventually going to die.