Duke Blue Devils (5-0) at Gonzaga Bulldogs (5-0)
College Basketball: Wednesday, November 21, 2018 at 5:00 pm (Lahaina Civic Center)
The Line: Gonzaga Bulldogs +5.5 -- Over/Under: 164 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The top-ranked Duke Blue Devils and Gonzaga Bulldogs will square off at the Lahaina Civic Center this Friday night in the title game of the Maui Jim Invitational.
The top-ranked Duke Blue Devils improved to 5-0 on the season after defeating the 8th ranked Auburn Tigers, 78-72, in the semifinals of the Maui Jim Invitational on Tuesday night. Duke never was able to really pull away from the Tigers, however, they held a two-possession lead for the majority of the game and was able to seal the victory after taking a 73-61 lead with 4:51 left in regulation. Duke shot 44.4% from the field and 28.0% (7-25) from beyond the arc while holding Auburn to just 36.4% shooting from the field and 34.4% (11-32) from three-point range. Duke outrebounded Auburn by a 46-41 margin and committed 13 turnovers in the victory. Leading the way for the Blue Devils was RJ Barrett who had 18 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal.
Coming into their game against Auburn, Duke was averaging 96.5 ppg on 50.2% shooting from the field. The Blue Devils were averaging 10.5 three-pointers per game on 37.8% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Duke has been led by RJ Barrett (22.8 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 4.2 apg), Zion Williamson (20.4 ppg, 9.4 rpg, 2.2 apg, 1.4 spg, 2.4 bpg), Cam Reddish (16.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 2.0 apg, 2.2 spg), and Tre Jones (8.0 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 6.0 apg, 1.2 spg).
Defensively, Duke was allowing their opponents to average 66.5 ppg on 36.4% shooting from the field. The Blue Devils has a rebound margin of 10.8 and a turnover margin of 4.0.
The 3rd ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs improved to 5-0 on the season after defeating the Arizona Wildcats, 91-74 late last night in the semifinals of the Maui Jim Invitational. Gonzaga had their hands full early with Arizona as they trailed by a 45-37 margin at halftime, however, the Bulldogs showed us how good they can be in the 2nd half as they dominated the Wildcats on both ends of the floor and pulled away for the victory after taking an 81-70 lead with 2:58 left in regulation. Gonzaga shot 53.1% from the field and 31.0% (9-29) from beyond the arc in the victory. Gonzaga outrebounded Arizona by a 36-31 margin and won the turnover battle by a 16-12 margin in the win. Leading the way for the Bulldogs was Zach Norvell Jr. who had a double-double with 20 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists, and 2 steals.
Coming into their game against the Wildcats, Gonzaga was averaging 100.5 ppg on 53.3% shooting from the field. The Bulldogs were averaging 7.5 three-pointers per game on 33.7% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Gonzaga has been led by Rui Hachimura (23.0 ppg, 5.6 rpg), Zach Norvell Jr. (17.6 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 3.4 apg), Brandon Clarke (15.2 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 1.6 apg, 1.2 spg, 3.6 bpg), and Josh Perkins (12.2 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 8.6 apg, 1.8 spg).
Defensively, Gonzaga was allowing their opponents to average 73.8 ppg on 40.0% shooting from the field. The Bulldogs had a rebound margin of 11.0 and a turnover margin of 1.3.
The Blue Devils are 7-0 ATS in their last 7 Wednesday games and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. West Coast Conference opponents. The Bulldogs are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
Duke has been absolutely incredible to start the season their offense, led by RJ Barrett & Zion Williamson, has looked dominant. Duke has talent across the board and outside of struggling a bit at the FT-line, they have pretty much dominated everywhere else and look unstoppable if they have their three-pointers falling. Gonzaga had a bit of a scare last night but showed that they also have one of the most dangerous offenses in the country as they currently rank 3rd in scoring offense and 8th in FG%. The Bulldogs have also done a great job on the glass as they rebound margin ranks 22nd. I was tempted to go with Gonzaga here, but I’m concerned that their defense just isn’t going to be able to slow down the Blue Devils in what should be a fast-paced game and as the line is reasonable at 5.5 points, I’m taking Duke to cover this spread. Good Luck!