Analysis: Louisville Cardinals Rally To Down Duke Blue Devils In Key ACC Clash
Matt Stone - The C-J

Analysis: Louisville Cardinals Rally To Down Duke Blue Devils In Key ACC Clash

Damion Lee added 24 points and Onuaku had a double-double as the Cardinals defeated Duke.

Phillip Steinmetz

The Louisville Cardinals got their sweet revenge today as they took down the Duke Blue Devils. This was an emotional game that included elbows being thrown, Duke hitting a ton of threes (who’s surprised honestly?), Louisville making a comeback, and Coach K garnering a technical foul. Sounds like an eventful afternoon, right? 

It was an incredible game from the KFC Yum! Center that Louisville desperately needed to win. Grayson Allen was an absolute monster throughout, but their lack of depth eventually caught up to Duke.

Grayson Allen Was Electric And Woeful

Everyone already knew coming into the game that Allen could light up the scoreboard, but he was insane today. He scored 19 first half points, making Damion Lee look average at best out on the court. He was hitting every open shot that was given to him and really made Louisville pay for their defensive mistakes. In the second half, he had a calm ten points, but he did let his emotions get to the best of him. After he was called for a foul late in the 2nd half, he yelled out some vulgar language and was given a technical foul. Damion Lee then hit the free throws to ice the game. Allen had a fantastic game with 29 points, but the technical foul was the nail in his team's coffin.

Deng Adel Was Louisville’s Best Player

Many people will disagree with this assertion since Lee scored 24 points and Onuaku had another double-double. But it was Deng Adel who was the deciding factor in the Cards' victory. He got the nod to start tonight over Trey Lewis and Donovan Mitchell, but not one really knew why. Adel was tasked with guarding Brandon Ingram for most of the game. He held Ingram to 8 points and forced the big man into a whopping ten turnovers. No one has been able to guard him like that, but Adel was able to for the entire game. It also helped that Adel had 12 points and five rebounds to outplay Ingram. Adel is just scratching the surface of his potential and should be a defensive stopper with extended minutes next season.

Louisville Never Stopped Fighting

The Cardinals were down by 13 in the second half and every time they would try to go on a run, Grayson Allen would usually hit a shot. Lee couldn’t make a shot to save his life and Onuaku kept turning the ball over. But that never stopped the Cardinals. Louisville went on an 8-0 run in the second half by consecutive threes from Lee and a dunk. Lee then made another long range bomb and Johnson made a jumper to take a six-point lead. Louisville never looked back from there to hold to a victory.