NCAA: Duke Smashes Kentucky, 118-84 in Opener

NCAA NCAA Men’s Basketball opened the 2018-19 season on November 6th with a massive lineup of games but no other game got as much attention and fanfare as the showdown between Duke (4) and the University of Kentucky (6). It was a highly anticipated game between two highly ranked teams.

The debuts of Duke rookies Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett quickly silenced the throngs of fans that trooped to the Bankers Life Fieldhouse to cheer for Kentucky. A long story, short, it was not pretty. “Tour de Force” is the best way to describe how the Blue Devils dismantled the Wildcats.

This was, by far, the worst loss of John Calipari’s career. Duke handily ran up a 59-42 advantage at the end of the first half. The second half was no different. Literally, with a score mirroring the first half, which resulted in the 34-point blowout.

The culprits? Well, none other than Duke rookie tandem of R.J. Barrett and Zion Williamson. Williamson stuffed the stat sheet with 28 points on 11-for-13 shooting from the field with seven rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block. Barrett dropped 33 points with four rebounds and six assists.

Keldon Johnson and Reid Travis paced Kentucky with 23 and 22 points, respectively.

The victory has now vaulted Duke to the top of many Power Rankings. They are definitely a force to be reckoned with this season. Kentucky will regroup and get on the board in no time and both of these teams will be must-watch squads throughout the 2018-19 NCAA season.

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